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v. 9 





Committee of Publication. 






^ubltsfjeU at tije (Sparge of tfje iffilassarijusetts historical &rust jFunti. 




John Wilson and Son, Cambridge. 




Officers of the Society, elected April 9, 1896 . . . vii 

Resident Members viii 

Honorary and Corresponding Members x 

Members Deceased xii 

Preface xiii 

The Bowdoin and Temple Papers 3 

Index 489 


Digitized by the Internet Archive 
in 2013 




Elected April 9, 1896. 





$lecor&mg Jteetarg. 
EDWARD J. YOUNG, D.D Waltham. 

Comaponoittg £tmtnx%. 




feattifa faommxttzz of % Council, 

ARTHUR LORD, A.B Plymouth. 








Hon. Samuel Abbott Green, LL.D. 
Charles Eliot Norton, LL.D. 


Rev. Edward Everett Hale, D.D. 

Hon. Horace Gray, LL.D. 

Rev. Edwards Amasa Park, LL.D. 

William Henry Whitmore, A.M. 

Hon. William Crowninshield 
Endicott, LL.D. 

Samuel Eliot, LL.D. 
Josiah Phillips Quincy, A.M. 

Henry Gardner Denny, A.M. 

Charles Card Smith, A.M. 
Hon. George Silsbee Hale, A.M. 

William Sumner Appleton, A.M. 
Hon. Theodore Lyman, LL.D. 

Abner Cheney Goodell, Jr., A.M. 
Edward Doubleday Harris, Esq. 

Hon. Mellen Chamberlain, LL.D. 
Winslow Warren, LL.B. 
Charles William Eliot, LL.D. 


Charles Franklin Dunbar, LL.D. 
Charles Francis Adams, LL.D. 
William Phineas Uphani, A.B. 

Hon. William Everett, LL.D. 
George Bigelow Chase, A.M. 
Hon. Henry Cabot Lodge, LL.D. 

John Torrey Morse, Jr., A.B. 
Justin Winsor, LL.D. 
James Elliot Cabot, LL.D. 

Henry Lee, A.M. 
Gamaliel Bradford, A.B. 
Rev. Edward James Young, D.D. 
Hon. John Lowell, LL.D. 

William Whitwell Greenough, A.B. 
Robert Charles Winthrop, Jr., A.M. 
Henry Williamson Haynes, A.M. 

Thomas Wentworth Higginson, LL.D. 
Rev. Edward Griffin Porter, A.M. 
John Codman Ropes, LL.B. 

Rev. Henry Fitch Jenks, A.M. 
Horace Elisha Scudder, Litt. D. 
Rev. Edmund Farwell Slafter, D.D. 
Hon. Stephen Salisbury, A.M. 



John Tyler Hassam, A.M. 
Rev. Alexander McKenzie, D.D. 

Arthur Lord, A.B. 
Arthur Blake Ellis, LL.B. 
Clement Hugh Hill, A.M. 
Frederick Ward Putnam, A.M. 
James McKellar Bugbee, Esq. 
Hon. John Davis Washburn, LL.B. 
Rev. Egbert Coffin Smyth, D.D. 

Rev. Arthur Latham Perry, LL.D. 

Hon. John Elliot Sanford, LL.D. 
Uriel Haskell Crocker, LL.B. 
Hon. Roger Wolcott, LL.B. 
Edward Channing, Ph.D. 

Samuel Foster McCleary, A.M. 
William Watson Goodwin, D.C.L. 
Hon. George Frisbie Hoar, LL.D. 
Rev. Alexander Viets Griswold 
Allen, D.D. 

Charles Greely Loring, A.M. 
Solomon Lincoln, A.M. 
Edwin Pliny Seaver, A.M. 

Albert Bushnell Hart, Ph.D. 
Thornton Kirkland Lothrop, LL.B. 
James Bradley Thayer, LL.D. 
Hon. Henry Stedman Nourse, A.M. 

Henry Fitz-Gilbert Waters, A.M. 
Abbott Lawrence Lowell, LL.B. 

Rev. Samuel Edward Herrick, D.D. 
Hon. Oliver Wendell Holmes, LL.D. 
Henry Pickering Walcott, M.D. 

John Fiske, LL.D. 
George Spring Merriam, A.M. 

Edward Lillie Pierce, LL.D. 
Hon. Charles Russell Codman, LL.B. 
Barrett Wendell, A.B. 
James Ford Rhodes, LL.D. 

Hon. Edward Francis Johnson, LL.B. 
Hon. Walbridge Abner Field, LL.D. 
Henry Walbridge Taft, A.M. 
Rt. Rev. William Lawrence, D.D. 
William Roscoe Thayer, A.M. 

Rev. Morton Dexter, A.M. 
Hon. Thomas Jefferson Coolidge, A.M. 
Hon. William Wallace Crapo, LL.D. 

Francis Cabot Lowell, A.B. 
Granville Stanley Hall, LL.D. 
Alexander Agassiz, LL.D. 
Hon. James Madison Barker, LL.D. 
Theodore Ayrault Dodge, Esq. 

Thomas Corwin Mendenhall, LL.D. 
Rev. Leverett Wilson Spring, D.D. 



James Hammond Trumbull, LL.D. 

Rev. William Scott Southgate, D.L. 



David Masson, LL.D. 

Marquis de Rochambeau. 

Rt. Rev. William Stubbs, D.D. 
Hon. William Maxwell Evarts, LL.D. 

Theodor Mommsen. 

William Edward Hartpole Lecky, 

Hon. Carl Schurz, LL.D. 

Samuel Rawson Gardiner, LL.D. 
Rt. Hon. James Bryce, D.C.L. 




Hon. William Henry Trescot. 

Goldwin Smith, D.C.L. 

Joseph Jackson Ploward, LL.D. 

Charles Jane way Stille, LL.D. 
M. Jules Marcou. 

Charles Jeremy Hoadly, LL.D. 
John Foster Kirk, LL.D. 

Hon.Manning Ferguson Force,LL.D. 

Hon. John Bigelow, LL.D. 
Henry Charles Lea, LL.D. 
Hubert Howe Bancroft, A.M. 

Rev. Richard Salter Storrs, LL.D. 

M. Gustave Vapereau. 

John Austin Stevens, A.B. 
Joseph Florimond Loubat, LL.D. 
Charles Henry Hart, LL.B. 

Rev. Moses Coit Tyler, LL.D. 
Hermann von Hoist, Ph.D. 
Franklin Bowditch Dexter, A.M. 
John Marshall Brown, A.M. 
Hon. Andrew Dickson White, LL.D. 
George Washington Ranck, Esq. 

James McPherson Le Moine, Esq. 
Rt. Hon. Sir George Otto Trevelyan, 

Bart., D.C.L. 
Henry Adams, A.B. 

Julius Dexter, A.B. 
Rev. Henry Martyn Baird, D.D. 
Hon. William Wirt Henry. 
Vicomte d'Haussonville. 

Rev. Charles Richmond Weld, B.D. 
Herbert Baxter Adams, Ph.D. 
Signor Cornelio Desimoni. 

Hon. Jabez Lamar Monroe Curry, 

Amos Perry, LL.D. 

Hon. William Ashmead Courtenay. 

Rt. Rev. Mandell Creighton, D.D. 
John Andrew Doyle, M.A. 

Abbe Henry Raymond Casgrain, 

Alexander Brown, Esq. 

John Nicholas Brown, Esq. 
Capt. Alfred Thayer Mahan, D.C.L. 
Hon. Jacob Dolson Cox, LL.D. 

Leslie Stephen, LL.D. 
James Burrili Angell, LL.D. 
William Babcock Weeden, A.M. 
Richard Garnett, LL.D. 

Rev. George Park Fisher, D.D. 
Woodrow Wilson, LL.D. 
Joseph Williamson, A.M. 



Members who have died since the last volume of Collections was issued, Dec. 18, 1895, 
arranged in the order of their election, and with date of death. 


Rev. Lucius Robinson Paige, D.D Sept. 2, 1896. 

Hon. Martin Brimmer, A.B Jan. 14, 1896. 

Francis Amasa Walker, LL.D Jan. 5, 1897. 

William Goodwin Russell, LL.D Feb. 6, 1896. 

George Otis Shattuck, LL.B Feb. 23, 1897. 

Hon. William Steele Shurtleff, A.M Jan. 14, 1896. 

Benjamin Marston Watson, A.B Feb. 19, 1896. 

Hon. Henry Lillie Pierce Dec. 17, 1896. 


Ernst Curtius July 11, 1896. 


Hon. John Meredith Read, A.M Dec. 27, 1896. 

Horatio Hale, A.M Dec. 29, 1896. 



piEERE BAUDOUIN, a Huguenot of La Rochelle — by 
-** tradition a man of good family and some fortune — 
fled from France to Ireland at the period of the Revocation 
of the Edict of Nantes, and ultimately found his way to New 
England, where his name was gradually anglicized to Peter 
Bowdoin. He died in Boston in 1706, leaving two sons, of 
whom the elder, John, settled in Virginia, founding there 
a family of much respectability; while the younger, James, 
became the richest merchant of his day in Boston, where 
he died in 1747. The younger of the two surviving sons 
of the last-named was one of the distinguished men of 
the American Revolution, a detailed account of whose 
career may be found in a published Address on the Life 
and Services of James Bowdoin, delivered at Bowdoin 
College in 1849 by a late President of this Society.* 
It is only necessary to say of him here that he was 
born in Boston, August 7, 1726 ; graduated at Harvard in 
1745 ; married, Sept. 15, 1748, Elizabeth, daughter of 
Hon. John Erving ; became a merchant, a member of 
the Legislature, and the intimate friend of Benjamin 
Franklin; sat in the Council of Massachusetts from 1757 
to 1774, and again in 1776-1777; was elected in 1774 

* See Addresses and Speeches by Kobert C. Winthrop, vol. i. pp. 90-133 ; and 
Washington, Bowdoin, and Franklin, a subsequent volume by the same author. 


one of the five delegates to the Continental Congress ; 
was Chairman of the Committee for promulgating the 
Declaration of Independence in Boston ; was President of 
the Convention to frame a Constitution for Massachusetts 
in 1779 ; was one of the founders of the American 
Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1780, and its President 
from that year until his death ; was Governor of Massa- 
chusetts in 1785 and 1786 , and a member of the State 
Convention to ratify the Constitution of the United States 
in 1788. He died in Boston Nov. 6, 1790, aged 64, leav- 
ing a son and daughter. 

The only son of the preceding, generally known as the 
third James Bowdoin, though not so distinguished as his 
father, was a man of some note. Born in Boston, Sept. 
22, 1752, he graduated at Harvard in 1771, and was 
subsequently at Christ Church, Oxford. After devoting a 
good deal of time to foreign travel, he followed the 
example of his father and grandfather, and became a 
Boston merchant ; married, May 18, 1781, Sarah, only 
child of his uncle, Hon. William Bowdoin ; became a 
benefactor of Bowdoin College, in Maine, which had been 
named after his father ; sat in the Massachusetts Legisla- 
ture ; was a personal friend of Thomas Jefferson and 
James Madison, the former of whom appointed him 
United States Minister to Spain in 1805, and subse- 
quently Associate Minister to France. After a residence 
of several years in Paris at a most interesting period, he 
returned home in 1809, and died Oct. 11, 1811, at his 
seat of Naushon Island, aged 59. With him ended the 
male line of the Boston Bowdoins, but by the provisions 
of his will, and the will of his widow (who became the 
second wife of Gen. Henry Dearborn), the name of 
Bowdoin was successively assumed by various descend- 


ants of Governor Bowdoin's only daughter, Elizabeth, 
who, so far back as January 20, 1767, had married 
John Temple, then Surveyor-General of Customs for the 
Northern district of America, later Sir John Temple, 

This gentleman was the second surviving son of a 
Captain Robert Temple, who came to this country in 1717. 
founded a Scotch-Irish settlement on the Kennebec, and 
ultimately established himself near Boston, where he 
married a daughter of John Nelson, built a house on 
Noddle's Island, subsequently acquired the estate of 
Ten Hills Farm so long associated with Governor Win- 
throp, and died there in 1754, leaving a numerous family. 
His son John was born in Boston in August, 1732, but went 
early to England, where he received much kindness from 
the Grenville family, to whom he was doubly though dis- 
tantly related, his father having represented a younger 
branch of the Temples of Stowe, of whom Richard Grenville, 
Earl Temple, was heir-general, and his mother having de- 
scended from the Temples of Stantonbarry, another branch 
of the same prolific stock. Through the Grenville influence 
John Temple obtained, in 1760, the Surveyor-Generalship 
of Customs above-mentioned, and in the following year 
the less important post of Lieutenant-Governor of New 
Hampshire. The spirit and activity shown by him in 
detecting abuses in the Revenue Service met with general 
approbation, but he incurred the enmity of Sir Francis 
Bernard, then Governor of Massachusetts, whom he ac- 
cused of corruption. In 1767 his office became merged 
in a newly created Board of Customs for North America, 
of which he was one of the five Commissioners ; but as his 
colleagues were friends of Bernard, while his own inti- 
macies were with the popular party, there ensued much 


friction, and in the autumn of 1770 Temple was super- 
seded, probably by the influence of Bernard, who had 
returned to England. Seeking redress in London, he was 
refused further employment in America, but after some 
delay obtained the post of Surveyor-General of Customs in 
England, with a good salary, from which, after having 
held it less than two years and a half, he was summarily 
dismissed in 1774, Lord North refusing him any explana- 
tion. As the dismissal of Dr. Franklin occurred at the 
same time, Temple was naturally accused of having been 
associated with Franklin in transmitting to Boston the 
famous letters of Governor Hutchinson, a charge which led 
to his well-known duel with William Whately.* 

For the next ten years he remained out of office. Lord 
Temple and George Grenville were both dead, and the 
latter's son, afterward Marquis of Buckingham, could for 
the time being do nothing for him. He passed his time 
chiefly in England, occasionally on the Continent, making 
two separate visits to America of some duration, and all 
the while endeavoring, by means of his intimacy with 
leading men of both countries, to bring about a better 
state of feeling between the mother country and the 
colonies. He had a difficult part to play, and it is not 
surprising that his efforts were unsuccessful. The son-in- 
law of Bowdoin and the* friend of Franklin, he was natu- 
rally regarded with distrust by Lord North, while his 
English associations and his relationship to the Grenvilles 
inspired little confidence in Boston and Philadelphia. 
After the Treaty of Peace, however, he was made Consul- 

* The only reference to this duel found among these papers is in a letter from 
Mrs. John Temple (dated at London, March 3, 1774) to her brother James in Italy. 
In it she speaks of the distress the affair had caused her, and alludes to an account 
of it which she had previously written him. This account would appear to have 


General to the United States with a large salary, a position 
which he held for thirteen years, making his principal 
residence at New York, where he exercised much hospi- 
tality. He died there Nov. 17, 1798, aged 66, leaving the 
reputation of a warm-hearted man, whose impulsive 
temper had sometimes involved him in bitter controversies, 
but who was a great favorite with his friends and much 
beloved by his family. His elder brother Robert having 
left no male issue, he had become, in 1782, the head of 
his branch of the Temples, and four years later he was 
notified by Lord Buckingham that their mutual kinsman, 
Sir Richard Temple, seventh baronet of Stowe, had died 
childless, and that he (John Temple) was next in succes- 
sion.* The estate of Stowe had long been separated from 
the title, but this he promptly assumed, and it is still 
borne by a descendant of his in the fourth generation. 
His two sons (one of whom took the name of Bowdoin) 
preferred to live in England, but his widow removed from 
New York to Boston, in order to be near her elder daughter, 
who had married, in 1786, Thomas Lindall Winthrop, 
afterward President of this Society. 

Mr. Winthrop successively administered the estates of 
the widow and son of Governor Bowdoin, of Sir John and 
Lady Temple, and of other members of his wife's family. 
He thus came into possession of a mass of Bowdoin and 
Temple papers, which, with his other family-papers, passed 
at his death, in 1841, to his youngest son, the late Hon, 
Robert C. Winthrop. The latter, being then detained in 
Congress by public business, was unable to give personal 
attention to the breaking up of his father's establishment, 
and the result was the disappearance of the larger part of 

* For this and other letters of the Marquis of Buckingham, see Proceedings, 
vol. ix. pp. 69-80. 


these Bowdoin and Temple manuscripts, which were dis- 
covered, more than fifty years later, by our associate, 
Robert C. Winthrop, Jr., in a forgotten chest, originally 
supposed to contain only probate accounts. This explan- 
ation is necessary in order to show why Hon. Robert C. 
Winthrop did not many years ago place the whole body 
of the papers at the Society's disposal, instead of content- 
ing himself with communicating the selections which are 
to be found scattered through our volumes of Proceedings. 
The entire collection stretches over the period from 1750 
to 1811. Including many letters and papers already to 
be found in print in various forms, but not including 
strictly family-letters, it is now contained in five large 
folio volumes of original correspondence, two letter-books, 
and several smaller volumes of miscellaneous papers, to 
say nothing of a variety of printed matter which has been 
turned over to the Society's library.* 

As so many letters from this great mass of papers have 
been printed in the Proceedings from time to time, very 
few of which are also contained in the present volume, it 
has been thought desirable to append a reference to the 
places where such letters may be found. They are as 
follows : — 

Vol. iii. p, 


Vol. xii. 


, 207-211 







153, 154 




232, 233 




ieries iv. 














* For some further account, see 2 Proceedings, vol. viii. pp. 59-63, and 518. 


The letters and other documents now printed extend 
over the period from July, 1756, to Nov., 1782, and relate 
almost wholly to public affairs, though there are a con- 
siderable number of private letters which place in a pleas- 
ant light the personal relations of prominent actors in the 
contest between Great Britain and the Colonies. The 
important letters of William Bollan to the Council of 
Massachusetts or to committees of that body are printed 
from the originals, or from duplicates or triplicates, which 
probably remained in the hands of Mr. Bowdoin as a leading 
member of the Council. All have the autograph signature 
of Mr. Bollan. Most of the answers are printed from rough 
draughts, of which many are in the handwriting of Bow- 
doin or with additions or corrections by him. Bowdoin's 
own letters are printed from his rough draughts or from 
copies made by himself in a very small and neat hand. 
Mr. Temple, on the contrary, was a very careless writer, 
though evidently fond of using his pen ; and many of his 
copies are mere scrawls. Among the other letters in the 
volume are not a few of much historical interest and im- 
portance, — such as the letters to and from Thomas 
Pownall, and especially the very interesting series of letters 
from Thomas Whately to John Temple. It is much to 
be regretted that copies of so few of Temple's letters to 
Whately were preserved. As they are not in his Letter- 
Book, it is probable that they were copied on separate 
sheets of paper which have since disappeared. 

Boston, March 15, 1897. 





Wotton, July y e 18 th , 1756. 

Dear Sir, — Your letter of the end of last month did 
not reach me so soon as it otherwise woud have done, as 
I was then gone abroad upon a visit to Lord Egremont, & 
I delayd giving an answer to it till I knew how far I coud 
obey your commands. At my return from Pet worth I 
spoke to my brother, M r Qbrien,:j: who is the only person 
I can easily speak to at the Treasury Board about such 
busyness. He has since informd me that he has enquird 
about the appointment of M r Temple, § your nephew, to 
be Controller of the Customs at New York, that it is not 
yet come to the Treasury, that when it does come he will 
use his good offices to get it confirmd if there is no other 
positive engagement made of it. I shall be very glad if 
it can contribute to his success as I shall allways interest 
myself in every thing that relates to you & your family, & 
am very truely, dear Sir, 

Your most faithfull & obedient humble servant. 

George Grenville. 

Paschal Nelson, Esq*. 

* At this time Grenville was not in office, having been dismissed from the lucrative post 
of Treasurer of the Nav} T in November, 1755. — Eds. 

f Second son of the first John Nelson (1654-1734), was a graduate of Harvard College 
in the class of 1721. He died unmarried in London July 19, 1759. — Eds. 

X Percy Wyndham O'Brien was one of the Lords of the Treasury in the administration 
of the Duke of Newcastle. He was a brother of George Grenville's wife and of Charles 
Wyndham, Earl of Egremont. He took the name of O'Brien in pursuance of the will of an 
uncle, Lord Thomond, in the Irish peerage. — Eds. 

§ John Temple; his mother (Mehitabel) was a sister of Paschal Nelson. —Eds. 



Boston, Oct° 17, 1759. 

S R , ■ — I rec d your favor of the 30 th July, with an ac- 
count of your arrival at London after an agreable passage, 
which gave me a great deal of pleasure. I am much 
obliged to you for the magazines you sent, among which 
was the Royal Magazine (the 1 st N°) which you'll be pleased 
to send me for every month as it shall be published. I 
have already acquainted you with the taking of Niagara, 
Carilon, & Crown Point, and have now to congratulate 
you on the reduction of Quebeck which surrender' d the 
17 th ult. in consequence of the glorious action that hap- 
pend on the 13 th , when Wolfe became immortal. I need 
not mention the particulars, as you must have them in 
a more direct manner before this can reach you. We 
had upon this occasion (the last evening) the most gen- 
eral & most brilliant illumination that was ever seen in 
America.! We are in hopes Gen 1 Amherst will complete 
this good work by the reduction of Montreal : he proceeded 
down Lake Champlain the 11 th inst. with 4,500 men to 
remove the French from S e John's, where they are very 
strongly intrenched upon an island. If he succeeds there 
& Gen 1 Gage (who was the 8 th inst fc at Oswego) should go 
seasonably down Cataraqui so as to meet him at Montreal 
we may expect that Montreal may be reduced ; tho 
Vaudreuil, who has 10,000 men with him, if he acts with 

* Mr. Bowdoin's brother-in-law, third son of John Erving, who was one of the richest 
merchants in New England. He died in the West Indies, unmarried. — Ens. 

t "The Province-Honse, Court House, and the Houses in all Parts of the Town were 
beautifully illuminated; and several Windows presented to View some ingenious Repre- 
sentations : A Number of large Bonfires formed in a pyramidical Manner were on several 
Eminences in the Town; and an Abundance of extraordinary Fire-Works were play'd off 
in almost every Street; more especially the greatest Quantity of Sky-Rockets ever seen on 
any occasion. — In short, as the Consequence of such a Victory, with which Heaven has 
bless'd his Majesty's Arms, must be so happy to us in an especial Manner, so the Rejoicings 
were the greatest ever known, an universal Joy appearing in Persons of all Ranks, tho' not 
without some allay of Sorrow at the Loss of the brave General by whose Means, under 
GOD, Quebec was oblig'd to submit to the British Government." (The Boston Evening- 
Post, Oct. 22, 1759.) — Eds. 


spirit and his men don't continue to be poltrons, may 
greatly obstruct if not intirely prevent it, especially con- 
sidering how far elapsed the season for action is. My 
next I hope will inform you M r Amherst's success. All 
friends send their complim ts . 


Leicester Square, Feb 11 12 th , 1761. 

Sir, — On the 20 th of last month the House of Comons 
granted £200,000 to his Majesty, to enable him to com- 
pensate the respective provinces in North America their 
expences of the troops they raised, in the same form of 
words used in the last year's grant of the like sum. In 

* William Bollan was for some years agent for the Province of Massachusetts in England, 
and afterward agent for the Council alone. He was born in England and came over with 
Shirley, whose second daughter he married in 1743. He "was a lawyer of eminence in his 
profession, and was Advocate General when he was chosen agent for the Province and sent 
to England to solicit the reimbursement of the charge in taking and securing Cape Breton. 
In obtaining this he discovered as much address as fidelity ; he acted like a wise man who 
would persevere till he gained his object." " In 1768 he obtained a copy of the letters written 
against the town of Boston by Gov. Bernard, Gen. Gage, &c, and from this time he 
became a most popular man amongst those who once could not view him with any com- 
placency. Mr. Hancock declared in the House of Representatives, that there was no man 
to whom the Colonists were more indebted, and whose friendship had been more sincere." 
(See Eliot's Biographical Dictionary, pp. 73, 74.) In a letter to Thomas Hollis, dated Oct. 
17, 1768, Rev. Andrew Eliot writes, — "I have been always of the opinion that if Mr. 
B— 11— n had been continued in his agency, many of the disputes we have had with Great 
Britain, and which it is probable we shall have, would have been prevented. He was per- 
fectly acquainted with our affairs, would have been able to convince the ministry of the 
impolicy of their measures, if they were at all open to conviction, and would have taught 
his constituents here to conduct with caution and prudence, which certainly are not incon- 
sistent with a firm adherence to our rights. I freely spoke against that gentleman's dis- 
mission as an imprudent step; now it is too late ; others see and own it to be so. The Speaker 
of the late House of Representatives hath told me more than once, that he heartily wished 
they had taken my advice. Party views influenced them, as they generally do." (4 Mass. 
Hist. Coll , vol. iv. p. 430.) Mr. Bollan continued in active life until 1775, and died in the 
following year. — Eds. 

t Andrew Oliver was born in Boston March 28, 1706, and graduated at Harvard College 
in 1724. From 1743 to 1746 he was one of the representatives of Boston in the General 
Court; one of the Council from 1746 to 1765 ; Secretary of the Province from 1756 to 1770; 
and Distributor of Stamps under the Stamp Act in 1765. He succeeded Hutchinson as 
Lieutenant Governor, in 1771, and died in Boston March 3, 1774. See Drake's Dictionary 
of American Biography, p. 671. — Eds. 


the course of my attendance to obtain this grant, on the 
12 th of Jan ry , when it was proposed at the Treasury that 
two thirds only of the aforesaid sum shou'd be granted 
for the last year's service, because, M r West said, the Colo- 
nies had raised but two thirds of the number of troops 
which they raised in preceeding years, after what passed 
respecting this subject was concluded, M r West mentioned 
to me the apportionment of the last year's grant ; where- 
upon I informed him that I had received no accounts of 
the expences of the campaign in 1759, imputing this to 
the captures of several ships coming from Boston, and 
acquainted him that I was fully satisfied by my instruc- 
tions given b}' the General Court the accounts had been 
dispatched, and that supposing they were miscarried in 
their passage I had in Octob r advised the General Court 
of it, and expected others. I had some time before this 
understood that the agents of other Colonies had petitioned 
for an apportionment ; but I chose to let the matter rest, 
without making any motion for delay until called upon, 
hoping that in the mean time the accounts wou'd come to 
hand ; but now of necessity I prayed that the matter 
might be deferred. M r West appointed an attendance on 
the next Board-day, and after several attendances, on the 
22 d of Jan ry I presented a memorial to their Lordships 
praying the apportionment shou'd be postponed til the 
accounts arrived, and it was accordingly deferred, tho' 
several of the agents attended that day to bring it on. I 
informed them that it was my purpose, if possible, to get 
the service of our Province troops in keeping garrison at 
Louisbourg & Nova Scotia during the winter to be con- 
sidered as a service different from the campaign service, 
the expence whereof was intended to be compensated by 
the parliamentary grant, and consequently to get the ex- 
pence of this extraordinary service paid out of some other 
fund, and not out of the cohion bag; but that before the 
accounts came to hand I cou'd make no motion touching 


this point. My proposal appearing to them reasonable, 
as well as serviceable to their constituents in case of suc- 
cess, they acquiesced in the desired delay. Upon consider- 
ing my instructions relative to this matter, with all its 
circumstances, this proposal appeared to me to be just k 
equitable, as well as beneficial to the Province, being per- 
suaded that this extraordinary winter service was not 
within the contemplation of the Parliament when the 
grant was made, at which time the service was not con- 
cluded, the grant being made on the 31 st of March ; so that 
the expence of the service from that time til May is out 
of the words of the grant, as well as the whole out of the 
meaning of it, according to my sense of the matter ; 
nevertheless I have at present very little hopes of my 
proposal succeeding, and not much better of that which is 
mentioned by the General Court in their instructions. The 
difficulties attending this affair have been unfortunately 
encreased by the want of the proper accounts, and are 
further augmented by the near approach of the dissolution 
of the Parliament, which with the present state of the 
finances with other public affairs, and of all things relative 
to this matter, leave much less room for prosecuting any 
measure to effect concerning it than is desirable. On the 
6 th instant I received by the penny post the account of the 
charges paid by the Province for his Majesty's service in 
the year 1759, and yesterday I received by way of Bristol 
a triplicate of it, each of them being accompanied with a 
letter from the Lieut*. Governor, wherein he informs me 
that it is not possible to ascertain til the rolls are made 
up the charge of the Province's keeping garrisons at Louis- 
bourg & Nova Scotia ; and after mentioning divers matters 
proceeds to make an estimate of it, but computation, I 
fear, will not supply the place of a particular account with 
proofs, and be received as a proper foundation for any 
special demand, so that all things seem to conspire to 
embarrass this business. 


I am with the greatest respect for the Great & General 
Court, Sir, 

Your most obedient and most humble servant. 


M R Seury Oliver. 


Leicester Square, Feb^ 14 th , 1761. 
Sir, — My letter of the 12 th instant was dispatched 
in so much haste that I omitted mentioning that the 
General Court having by their instructions said, " the 
Secretary wou'd furnish me with an account of what had 
been advanced to such men as were raised by the Prov- 
ince, and served on board his Majesty's ships-of-war up 
Canada river in the year 1759, for their wages while on 
board said ships, in which account wou'd be included the 
wages of said men for a certain time from their going 
from Boston to their getting on board said ships, and 
from their being discharged to their arrival there," I ex- 
pected to have received this account, but that it was not 
yet come to hand ; nor have I received any copies of the 
muster rolls or pay rolls relating to these seamen, said 
by the L* Governor, in his letter of the 14 th of July? to be 
sent to me, nor any papers respecting this demand, saving 
the powers given by the seamen to the Treasurer, with his 
substitutions to me, in some few of which mention is made 
of the ships wherein the constituents served. Gov 1 
Pownall having called upon me yesterday, to decline by 
reason of the state of his affairs the care of the applica- 
tion for relief of the sufferers by the fire at Boston, upon 
my enquiry he informed me that the agreement made 
between "him and Admiral Durell respecting these seamen 
was made by letter, and he seem'd fully persuaded that 
the Admiral's letter, or a duplicate, was lodged with the 
Secretary, saying at the same time that if he had the 


original it was packed up together with his other papers 
left in M r Hancock's hands, and that I shou'd have it 
when he received it ; but the time of his receiving his 
papers I perceived was very uncertain. 

The sums raised within a year past for the public 
service having far exceeded what was ever raised in any 
preceeding year, and being found to fall very short of 
what is wanted, the difficulties relating to money mat- 
ters are much increased, and will unavoidably, I fear, 
in some respects affect the Province service, so that I 
rejoyce at the last parliamentary grant being made so 
early in the session, and desire to observe that too much 
care cannot be taken in preparing and dispatching the 
plainest acounts & best proofs of every demand. 

I am, with the greatest respect for the Great & General 
Court, Sir, 

Your most obedient and most humble servant. 


Ma Secry Oliver. 

The Hon l James Bowdoin, Esq*. 

Sir, — I have the honor of your letter of the 13 th of 
May last, with a certificate appointing me agent for 
the Society for propagating Christian Knowlege among 
the Indians in North America. As I should naturally 
wish success to so pious & usefull an undertaking, you 
may depend upon my utmost indeavours to get your 
Act of Incorporation confirmd. I can with the more 
propriety engage in its favour, as the design of this Act 

* Jasper Mauduit was a prominent Dissenter in England, and succeeded William Bollan 
as agent of Massachusetts, having been chosen by the General Court April 23, 1762. He 
held this office for a little more than two years, when he resigned and Richard Jackson, Jr., 
was chosen in his place. The act of the General Court incorporating the " Society for 
propagating Christian Knowledge among the Indians in North America" was passed in 
Feb., 1762, and disallowed in May of the following year. See Province Laws, Vol. iv. 
pp. 520-523, 563, 564. — Eds. 


directly falls in with that service, which the charter of 
the Province of Massachusets declares to have been the 
principal end of the said Plantation. The charter of W m & 
Mary, by reciting this sentiment, as the principal end of 
King Charles's patent adopts it as its own. I am, Sir, 
with the highest regard for the gentlemen of the Society. 
Your most obedient humble servant. 

Jasp b Mauduit. 

Lime Street, 27 th 8', 1762. 


Boston, Nov r 2, 17C2. 
Sir, — The students at our College in Cambridge having 
for a considerable time past been increasing, it has become 
necessary to erect a new building to accommodate such 
as wanted chambers. This being represented to the 
General Court they granted £4,250 for that purpose ; but 
the building which that sum was intended to effect not 
being large enough to accommodate the whole, & a com- 
modious room being wanted for a library 't was judged 
expedient to build upon a larger plan, provided the 
means of doing it could be had. The only means of 
doing it (as a further sum could not be expected from the 
General Court after so generous a grant) was by a lottery, 
with respect to which, when Governor Bernard (who upon 
all occasions has shewn himself a great friend to the 
College) was applied to, his Excellency said he would 
readily give his consent to an act for allowing a lottery, 
had not the Lords of Trade expressed their disapprobation 
of lotteries, and enjoined him to allow of none, but at the 
same time observed that if a bill was to be prepared he 
would send an abstract of it to their Lordships, and 
endeavour to obtain their leave for his skrnincr it. Accord- 
ingly a bill has been prepared, & his Excellency by this 
conveyance has writ fully upon it to their Lordships, 

1762.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 11 

whose favor, considering 1 the good end the lottery is 
intended to promote, there is great reason to hope for. 
Now, Sir, what the friends of the College have to ask as 
a favor of you is, that you will be pleased to exert your 
influence to obtain of their Lordships a favorable answer 
to Gov r Bernard's letter, that the obstacle to the passing 
of the bill may be removed * As the circumstances of 
this affair require that the Governor should receive their 
Lordships' answer as soon as possible, it will be look'd on 
as a peculiar favor if you'd endeavour to procure it so as 
that his Excellency may have it before the opening of the 
spring, at which time, if no intelligence should arrive, the 
small plan must be adopted. It will be taken as a great 
favor if M r Jackson (the worthy gentleman concerned with 
you in some affairs of the Province)! will give his influ- 
ence in procuring a favourable and speedy answer to the 
Governor's letter. Being but little, or perhaps not at all, 
known to you (having had the pleasure of writing to you 
but once before, viz., on the act incorporating a Society 
here for propagating Christian knowledge in America) 
I should need to apologize for the trouble this may give 
you, did I not apprehend that it would be in some measure 
counterbalanced by the pleasure you take in rendering the 
Province any service in your power, as you will in this 
case, in its literary interests. 

I am, with great esteem, S r , yr. most obed* serv*. 

James Bowdoin. 

* The desired permission was promptly granted ; but it was not until June, 1765, that 
the General Court passed the act authorizing a lottery to be set up. The preamble recited 
that, " considering the great expense which the General Court has lately been at in building 
Hollis Hall, and also in rebuilding Harvard College, it cannot be expected that any further 
provision for the college should be made out of the public treasury, so that no other resort 
is left but to private benefactions, which, it is conceived, will be best excited by means of a 
lottery." Accordingly certain persons were appointed trustees to set up and carry on 
a lottery to raise the sum of three thousand and two hundred pounds, lawful money, to be 
expended for building a new hall for the College. See Province Laws, vol. iv. pp. 834, 835, 
and the learned editor's note, pp. 868, 869. — Eds. 

t Richard Jackson, Jr., was appointed by the General Court to act for the Province 
in case of the absence, sickness, or death of Jasper Mauduit. See Province Laws, vol. iv. 
p. 536 and passim. — Eds. 


You '11 excuse my importunity if I again request your 
endeavour that the answer to the Governor's letter may 
be conveyed as early as may be, and by several opportu- 
nities. If none direct, by way of New York, &c. 


James Bowdoin, Esq b . 

London, Dec- 24 th , 1762. 

Sir, — I have the pleasure of your letter of 2 d Nov r , 
and having just now been inform'd that there was a ship 
lying at Spithead, I send this to Portsmouth in the ut- 
most hurry, in hope of catching it before its departure. 
I had receiv'd no instructions from the Colony relative to 
the Lottery bill in favour of Harvard College, and ther- 
fore for that & other prudential reasons have transacted 
this affair with M r Pownal,* only as a private person and 
a friend of the College, and not as agent for the Colony, 
and in it I have had M r Jackson's kind assistance. I 
have now the pleasure to tell you that M r Pownal ac- 
quainted me this morning that the business was done, and 
that he would send me a letter to the General for that 
purpose, if I could get it convey 'd to him. I hope it will 
reach him at the same time this does. Much was said 
against lotteries in general, which I answer' d in the best 
manner I was able. I congratulate you on our success, 
and am willing to catch the earliest opportunity of ac- 
quainting you with it, that the service of the College may 
not be delay'd. I am, Sir, 

Your most humble servant. 

Jasp r Mauduit. 

* John Pownall, Secretary of the Board of Trade; he was the elder brother of Thomas 
Pownall. — Eds. 

1763.] JASPER MAUDUIT. 13 

I hope that the above went safe in the Devonshire, 
Cap* Hunter, though my letters which I got ready for 
Portsmouth by the next post, were to my great disap- 
pointment return'd, the ship being saild. I had not then 
time to mention that I went with M r Jackson to present 
to his Majesty the College Verses, # which are much ap- 
proved of here. The dedication is a very masterly per- 
formance. I heartily wish that the hint which is so 
very hansomly given at the end of it could reach his 
Majesty's notice to the obtaining the royal countenance 
and assistance, which the College so well deservs. 

The prudential reason I mentioned respects the atten- 
tion which ought always to be pay'd to the Province's 
independent right of legislation. At a time when the 
General Court is so justly alarm'd with an attempt to 
introduce a suspending clause into their acts, I could not 
but think that it would very ill become me as the Province 
Agent to do any thing which should give the least coun- 
tenance to the sending over copies of bills previous to the 
Governor's passing them, which would be just equivalent 
to their passing bills with such a suspending clause. For 
this reason, though at M r Pownal's request I took care 
of his letters to the Governor, and sent them down to 
Portsmouth to save him the trouble ; yet I wrote no letter 
to the Governor with them, that I might not know any 
thing of the subject of them, or contribute by any act of 
mine to the establishing of so dangerous a presendent [sic]. 
You will be so good, if you please, to mention this to the 
Governor, that I may not be thought wanting in my 
respect to him. I am, Sir, 

Your humble servant. 

Jasper Mauduit. 

The 6 th Jan'ry, 1763. 

* The "Pietas et Gratulatio," printed in 1761, on the accession of George III., by Har- 
vard College. — Eds. 


P. S. As I appeard only as a private sollicitor for 
Harvard College, M r Pownal told me that there was a fee 
of two guineas due to the office for all such private appli- 
cations, which I accordingly paid to him, & which the 
College is very welcome to. 


London, 7 th of April, 1763. 

Sir, — I promised in my last, of the 23 d of March, to 
give you a more particular ace* of my proceedings on the 
act for promoting Christian Knowlege. But it would 
more than fill this sheet if I were to go through the sev- 
eral shapes which the opposition to it has assumed, accord- 
ing to the several different occasions. So Ions; aeo as the 
10 th of Dec r I was told at the Plantation Office that this 
act was opposed by the Archbishop & the Society for 
propogating the Gospel. I ask'd M r Pownal what it was 
which his Grace objected to. He answerd that he could 
not well make it out. I then urged the necessity & con- 
venience of a speedy confirmation, and shew'cl him your 
letter to me, which he read over & seern'd satisfied with, 
& bad me go to S r Matthew Lamb # & get him to make a 
speedy report. I did so ; but could not prevail with him 
to make a report on that act singly, but he said he would 
do it on all the acts together. The 3 d of Febr'y I receiv'd 
notice from M r Pownall that the Lords were ready to 
hear me next day upon that act. I went the next morn- 
ing, & after waiting some time M r Pownal came out to 
me & acquainted me that the act was not approved of 
at the Board, & that it would not pass. But that upon 

* An eminent English lawyer, born in 1705, and died in 1768. He sat in the House of 
Commons as member for Peterborough from 1747 until his death, and was grandfather of 
he second Viscount Melbourne, who was Prime Minister on the accession of Queen Victoria. 
See Dictionary of National Biography, vol. xxxi. p. -432. — Eds. 

1763.] JASPER MAUDUIT. 15 

his representing to the Lords that I had frequently been 
with him to sollicit the confirmation, they had consented 
to hear what I had to say in its behalf. But that it was 
an extremly busy day, and he wishd to know the purport 
of what I had to offer. I told him that the bill spoke for 
its self & proceded from a laudable design, and that the 
views of the Society were clearly express'd in it. Inlarging 
upon the goodness of their intention & reminding him of 
your letter, he answer'd that the Lords would not dispute 
the laudableness of the design, but that there were political 
reasons for their not confirming it. That the title of the 
act was enough to overset it ; that it was for erecting a 
Society for propogating Christian Knowlege among the 
Indians of North America ; that the Province had not a 
right to grant charters which should extend beyond their 
own jurisdiction ; that under this act their missionaries 
might go among the Indians over all North America, & 
counterwork the designs of government here, as the 
Quakers had done in Pensilvania ; and besides that there 
was no provision made in the bill to oblige the Society to 
account to any officer of the government, which other in- 
corporated societys were always obliged to. To the first I 
said, that their fund was not such as to admit of missions 
of that extent ; that missionaries were imployed only to 
the westward among the Mohawks ; that I did not know 
that the Quakers had any such charter ; that the one col- 
ony or the other if they were disposed to counteract the 
designs of government here might do it without such a 
private charter as this as well as with it ; that Parliament 
here often granted charters to corporations without oblig- 
ing them to account to any but their own members ; that 
I was sure of one, Guy's Hospital, which I was a Governor 
of, which set out with a capital twenty times as great as 
this was, and yet accounted for it only to themselves ; 
that if the Board wou'd indulge me with their objections 
in writing, I would indeavour to answer them. He said 


lie did not know whether that would be granted. He was 
then sent for in to the Board, & soon after told me, — 
This proves a very busy day, and I would advise you to go 
home, for -nothing can be done to-day ; I will acquaint the 
Board with what you have said, & let me see you next 
week. I went the 8 th , when I was appointed a hearing 
on the 11 th . But the 11 th happened to be a bad day with 
me, & I was confined to my bed, and having no body else 
was obliged to send a servant with a message of excuse. 
I went again when I was well, & saw M r Pownal on the 
22 d , who told me, that he was sorry to acquaint me that 
the act would not pass, that it was gone from their Board, 
with a representation that it ought not to be confirmed. 
I again ask'd, for what reasons, and he again repeated 
much the same things as before. Adding that these 
people might apply the money to oppose the missionaries 
of the Church of England. I answerd that there was 
room enough for the few which this society could main- 
tain and all the Episcopal missionaries too, and that I 
wishd that Society for propogating the Gospel had im- 
ploy'd their missionaries more among the Indians than 
they had hitherto done in North America. He answerd 
that that matter would now become an object of govern- 
ment. And that something was under consideration for 
the whole of Indian affairs, and upon my asking him, he 
told me that I could do nothing farther in this business. 

I heartily wish that my indeavours had been more suc- 
cessfull & was much mortified that my illness prevented 
my attendance at the Board at one of the most critical 
times, when I was largely prepared to answer the objec- 
tions taken from the preamble's extending the bill to all 
North America, but I am fully satisfied that nothing 
which could be said or clone could have prevailed to the 
getting the bill confirmed. I am, Sir, 

Your most obedient humble servant. 

Jasp r Mauduit. 

1763.] JAMES BOWDOIN". 17 


Boston, April 25, 1763. 

S R , — I am honoured with y r letters of 27 th Oct°, 24 th 
Dec r , & 6 th Jan ry . The gent n of the Society are much 
obliged to you for your readiness to engage so heartily in 
favor of their incorporating act, and they doubt not, not- 
withstanding the opposition it was likely to meet with, 
your endeavors to procure the King's confirmation would 
be effectual. This opposition was least to be expected 
from a Society, the end of whose institution so much 
coincided with that of ours. 

In consequence of your application the Governor has 
received a letter from the Board of Trade with leave to 
pass the lottery bill relative to the College. In behalf of 
the College I return you hearty thanks for your vigorous 
& successful application & for your generosity in giving 
to the College the fees you paid to the office. You'll 
please to give the thanks of the College to M r Jackson 
for his kind assistance in the affair. 

I am very glad to hear the College Yerses have been 
approved, & heartily wish with you that the hint in the 
didication may be the means of obtaining the royal coun- 
tenance. Your generous disposition to the College will 
engage your endeavors for that purpose. Your cautious- 
ness of doing any thing that might look like giving up 
(as Agent) the Province's right of legislation sufficiently 
justifies your not writing the Governor on the subject of 
the lottery bill, an abstract of which he sent to the Lords 
of Trade. I have mentioned this matter to his Excell cy 
as you desired, and he is quite satisfied about it. 

I am, &c. 

May 9 th This day was held a meeting of the Overseers 
of the College to whom I comunicated your letter of 24 th 


Dec r & 6 th of January, as did M r Oliver your letter to 
him. They have a grateful sense of your favors to the 
College, & passed a vote of thanks to y r self & M r Jackson, 
which will be transmitted to you. 



London, 8 th June, 1764. 

Dear Sir, — I did not imagine when we parted that it 
would have been for so long a time. I thought your par- 
tiality for England would have brought you soon back 
again, for you had tried to leave us once, & could not help 
returning. Have you married a wife & cannot come, or 
will you still give us leave to expect you? You will 
find us ready to meet you again in the Crown & Anchor, 
tho' perhaps with respect to other avocations not quite 
so much at leisure as we were. Business has come on 
upon us all, but not such as to make us forget the agreable 
hours we used to spend together. I often think of my 
American freinds & sometimes presume to hope that 
they may now & then think of me. On that presumption 
I venture to remind you of your former acquaintance & 
flatter myself that you will not think it an intrusion to 
recal past scenes which we passed chearfully together. 
Since they were over I have frequently had the pleasure of 
hearing of you all. Lord Stirling, I was lately inform' d, 
was well ; Hamilton has always had one nephew or another 

* Thomas Whately is said to have been brought into public life by George Grenville, 
who made him his private secretary in 1762, when Grenville became one of the Secretaries 
of State. In 1703 he was appointed Joint Secretary of the Treasury. On the death of 
Grenville he attached himself to Lord North, and was assailed with unsparing severity 
by Junius. In January, 1771, he was appointed one of the Lords of Trade ; and not long 
afterward he was made one of the Under Secretaries of State. He died in June, 1772. 
It was to him that the Hutchinson and Oliver letters were addressed. See Grenville 
Papers, passim; N. Y. Col. Docs., vol. viii. p. 277, note; Correspondence of the Earl of 
Chatham, vol. iv. p. 75, note. — Eds. 

1764.] THOMAS WHATELY. 19 

in England, who corresponded with him. His brother 
Allen too has been here the last twelvemonth, but is just 
now returning to Pensylvania ; I took my leave of 
him this morning. Ingersal,* I find, is expected very soon 
in England. You have lost poor Morris. As to yourself, 
I hear of you both in your publick & your private char- 
acter. You may perhaps be surpris'd to find me so well 
acquainted with your proceedings as Surveyor General, 
but the mystery will be solved when I have told you 
that I have left the bar, & am now Secretary to the 
Treasury. It was with great pleasure that I executed one 
part of my business not long ago, which was to signify to 
the Commissioners of the Customs y e satisfaction you gave 
to the Lords of the Treasury by y e spirit & activity you 
shewed in the seizure you made at Rhode Island. This 
specimen of your zeal to destroy the contraband trade 
which is carried on there, & I am afraid in almost every 
other part of America, has (without flattery I assure you) 
rais'd great expectations of your success. Would all the 
officers of y e revenue do their duty in the same manner 
that pernicious practice would prevail no longer, so much 
to the disgrace of America & to y e diminution of y e revenue, 
but I hope a few such examples as you have shewn, & a 
proper attention to make such regulations from time to 
time as exigencies may require, will have their due effect. 
1 am sure all that can be done here will be done. It is a 
favourite object of y e present administration, & nothing 
will be omitted that can tend to accomplish it. The 

* Jared Ingersoll was born at Milford, Conn., in 1722 ; graduated at Yale College in 1742 ; 
and died at New Haven in 1781. Before the beginning of the troubles with the mother 
country he was held in high esteem by his fellow-countrymen, and in 1757 he was agent in 
England for Connecticut. He went to England in the autumn of 1764, with Joseph 
Harrison. In 1765 he was made one of the Stamp Distributors. Though he formally 
resigned the office shortly after his appointment he became excessively unpopular, and 
was burned in effigy. He was obliged to leave Connecticut, and was rewarded by the 
appointment of Judge of Vice Admiralty for New York and the middle colonies. He then 
went to Philadelphia, but after the close of the war he returned to Connecticut. See 
Sabine's American Loyalists, vol. i. pp. 561, 562. — Eds. 


greatest pains is taken to procure all y e information that 
they can in relation to the modes by which this illicit trade 
is carried on, & to apply proper remedies. As my present 
situation enables me to communicate any such information 
to those who will make the best use of it, I should be 
greatly obliged to you if you could furnish me with any. 
It must often happen that facts & observations occur 
to you which you may not think of that kind as to be 
officially transmitted hither, & which yet would be of 
great use if they were known; if it would not be too 
much trouble at a leisure hour to write me what you 
may think proper on the subject, you would confer a 
favour on me, as I am anxious about it, & my office 
necessarily engages me in it ; & I hope our old friendship 
will excuse the liberty I take in asking this favour. I 
doubt the new instructions that are preparing for the 
Custom House officers will be hardly ready by this mail ; 
but they will be finished before another goes, & if any 
merchant ship should sail in the meanwhile will probably 
be sent by her. They are [torn] not only to enforce the old 
regulations but [torn] support the execution of y e great 
Custom House [torn] the last session. I shall be glad to 
hear what [/on?] the sentiments of y e Americans upon y e 
new taxes, & what they think of a stamp duty, which was 
thought of but postponed to next winter out of regard to 
y e Colonies, to give them time to consider of it. To us 
it appears y e most eligible of any, as being equal, exten- 
sive, not burthensome, likely to yield a considerable reve- 
nue, & collected without a great number of officers. Do 
you apprehend any material objections ? & what do you 
guess it will raise, if imposed in any given proportion to y e 
same duty in England ? You will pardon my inquisitive- 
ness, but all these points are very interesting to me now, 
& you will oblige me by any information concerning them. 
Webb & Wedderburn are very well. Coll. Clarke has been 
abroad, chiefly in Portugal, for some time past, & is but 

1764.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 21 

lately come home. I shall be happy to hear from you 
whenever you will favour me with a letter, & am 
Your most obed. humble serv fc . 

Thomas Whately. 
Please to direct for me, at y e Treasury. 


Boston, July 2, 1764. 

S R , — Your last favor informed me that you had sent 
my letter to M r Canton, inclosed in one of your own, T 
the packet, for which I am much obliged. 

When I last saw M r Winthrop I inquired of him after 
iEpinus. He told me he sent it to M r Stiles of Newport, 
who would convey it to you. I thank you for your 
pamphlet relative to the massacre of the Indians.* You 
have given in it a very entertaining account of the hospi- 
tality practised even by barbarians towards their enemies, 
& such as must touch the souls (if they have any) of the 
perpetrators of so horrid a deed. Horrid, if it had been 
committed on enemies under the circumstances of the 
sufferers, & ten fold more so as on persons that were 
friends. Such diabolism (one would think) could be 
committed only in the infernal regions. 

The measures your Assembly have taken to rid the 
Province of Proprietary influence will probably occasion 
the establishment of such a government among you as 
will have sufficient strength to prevent the like outrage 
in future, or exemplarily to punish the authors of it if it 
should happen. The pamphlet published among you 
previous to the spirited resolves of the Assembly fully 
obviates the objections to a change of government, & is 

* " A Narrative of the late Massacres, in Lancaster County, of a Number of Indians, 
Friends of this Province, by Persons unknown. With some Observations on the same." 
It is reprinted in Sparks's Works of Benjamin Franklin, vol. iv. pp. 54-77. — Eds. 


well calculated to procure a change.* The Proprietaries, 
I dare say, will not think themselves very greatly obliged 
to the author, especially as he has pointed out such an 
easy way for the Crown to satisfy any demand they may 
have on account of their present right of jurisdiction. 

I am much obliged to you for the metzotinto print of 
yourself, which I rec d by M r Williams. I esteem it a 
valuable present, as it exhibits so good a likeness of a 
gentleman for whom I have a sincere regard. 

My compliments to your good family. I am with 
great respect. 

Y ra . J. B. 


Dear Sir, — The great zeal you have shewn for the 
improvement of y e revenue emboldened me some time ago 
to ask you some questions in relation to one branch of it, 
tho' not immediately within your department. I mean 
y e stamp duty, which unless unforeseen objections occur 
will probably be extended next year to America. There has 
not yet been time for me to receive your answer & your 
permission to write to you upon y e subject, but I cannot 
help presuming on your goodness so far as to address to 
you some further enquiries in relation to it, the answer to 
which you may be assured I shall keep very private, & 
shall esteem myself greatly obliged to you for. I know 
there has been a stamp act in your Colony. I should be 
glad to know what was its product & on what articles it 
chiefly produced. What difficulties have occurr'd in 
executing it ? What objections may be made to it, & 
what additional provisions must be made to those in force 

* The reference is doubtless to Franklin's pamphlet, " Cool Thoughts on the present 
Situation of our public Affairs. In a Letter to a Friend of the Country," in support of the 
movement to make Pennsylvania a royal province instead of a proprietary government. 
It is reprinted in Sparks's Works of Franklin, vol. iv. pp. 78-93. — Eds. 

1764.] THOMAS WHATELY. 23 

here ? The greatest difficulty will be to ascertain the 
law proceedings that ought to be stampt. I should be 
much obliged to you if you could procure me the names of 
your several Courts & of y e respective instruments & 
proceedings used therein, which any lawyer of your 
acquaintance can readily furnish you with. Have you 
any fines & recoveries ? Have you any inferior Courts 
that hold plea to a certain sum only ? What appeals 
have you from one Court to another ? & are your writs 
y e same as are mention'd in our stamp acts ? It will be 
a principal object of attention here to make this tax as 
little burthensome as possible, but for this purpose it will 
be necessary to know whether y e same duties as are im- 
posed in England on obligations, instruments of conveyance, 
& indentures of apprenticeship would be too heavy on the 
Colonies. Which of y e English duties will be burthen- 
some ? which should be omitted ? & which lighten' d & 
why ? I should also be glad to be inform'd whether you 
use stampt cards & dice, how many newspapers are circu- 
lated in y e Province, & what may reasonably be expected 
to be y e produce of a stamp act, should the duty be laid 
at an average in any given proportion to that imposed 
in England. I am ashamed to trouble you with so many 
questions, but y e importance of y e subject will, I hope, 
prevent their being thought impertinent, & our old 
acquaintance excuse the liberty I have taken. You will 
be glad after so much business to hear that our friend 
Webb is made a Welch Judge, which is a place for life of 
£700 f ann. Coll. Clarke, who has been in Spain & 
France since y e war, call'd on me yesterday, just y e same 
man & in just y e same spirits he ever was. Your other 
acquaintance whom I have y e pleasure to know are all 

Adieu, my dear Sir, & believe me 

Ever yours. 

Thomas Whately. 

Treasury Chambers, 14 tb Aug 8t , 1764. 



Boston, 10 Sep r , 1764. 
Dear Sir, — I cannot express the real pleasure that 
your most obliging letter of 8 June has given me. I have 
often wished for the correspondence that you have so 
kindly offerd, and you may depend that any thing that 
occurs to me in this country that can be any way worth 
your attention as Sec y to the Treasury, of which I wish 
you joy, I will constantly communicate. The approbation 
that my conduct has met with from the Lords of the 
Treasury cannot but afford great pleasure to one who is 
sensible he has no small share of ambition, & it is in some 
measure a recompence for the vast trouble and fatigue 
that I have had in the service of the revenue since my 
arrival in N° America (in which I have expended the 
whole income of my little patrimony in addition to the 
small, too small, allowance to me from the Board of Cus- 
toms, however as I told my friends that I came abroad 
not to make a fortune, but to make a character, so I am 
in hopes that my services in America may recomend me 
to future favour at home). I think upon the whole that 
things are now in such a way that all kinds of smugling 
& irregular trade will in a great measure soon be at an 
end. But I do not apprehend that the revenue that will 
be drawn from America will any way answer what seems 
to be the expectation of Ministry. I have paid all pos- 
sible attention to the trade of this country, and have con- 
sidered how the new act will probably operate. Molosses 
is the principal article on w ch any money worth men- 
tioning can be raised, & on that I fear Parliament will 
find they have left too large a duty in 3 d a gallon. The 
trade will either decline or methods will be found out 
thro corrupt officers in the West Indies to naturalize 
forreign produce there, & introduce it to the northern Col- 
onies as Brittish growth ; a most vilianous instance of this 

1764.] JOHN TEMPLE. 25 

I am now representing home, under cover to you, for your 
private perusal, after which you'l please to seal and send it 
to the Board. I could wish Parliament had left only 2 d f 
gal° on molosses imported into the Colonies, & that duty to 
have been general on the produce of Brittish as well as 
f orreign molosses ; it certainly would have raised something 
handsome, & the duty, I believe, would have been punc- 
tually paid. Our own sugar planters could have no rea- 
sonable objection to the duty's being general, for the 
molosses they export is so very inconsiderable that 'tis not 
worth mentioning, not 5,000 hh ds a year is exported from 
the whole island of Jamaica, and all the other English 
islands together do not export the like quantity. With 
them 'tis all turned into rum, & principally sent to Great 
Brittain. Had the duty extended to molosses of what 
produce soever there would have been no possible means 
of its escaping the duty, & 2 d a gallon, I believe, is full as 
much as the trade can bear & continue to flourish. The 
other dutys laid by the new act on the several articles 
imported from England will produce such trifles from the 
smallness of their importation that I need not say any 
thing about them, other than that the dutys may [be ?] 
very proper & I believe will be punctually paid. 

I come now to a more important affair, the stamp duty. 
This, I will suppose, as you say, is the most eligible & may 
be the most easily collected of any duty that can be laid, 
& will yield something handsome. On the same footing 
that it is in England, I suppose it will yield upwards of 
forty thousand pound sterling f annum in my district (the 
5 Northern Colonies). But then for a moment consider 
Great Brittain & her Colonies on the larger scale, & see 
whither it will be either expedient or prudent to lay such a 
duty. It is a certain fact that the produce of all these 
Colonies in the course of trade goes now to Great Brittain 
for her manufactories, and if they produced three times as 
much as they do, it would all go for the same purpose. 


Our people are extravigantly fond of shew & dress, and 
have no bounds to their importation of Brittish manufac- 
tories but their want of money. Suppose a stamp tax to 
take place & to yield sixty thousand a year to be collected 
in America & sent home, there would certainly be £60,000 
worth of goods less imported from Great Brittain, besides 
such a sum of money laying still in coffers for the Crown 
instead of circulating in the Colonies, already very much 
drained of cash. 

The sudden departure of this ship & the vast hurry I 
am in preparing the officers to enter upon the new act 
prevents my enlarging as I shall by the next oppertunity, 
and from time to time after, as things may occur. You 
will see by the inclosed papers what has been doing at 
Anguilla; notwithstanding what this Gumbs & Roberts 
say with regard to the clearances being forged, I have no 
doubt but that the whole has been carried on under the 
management & by connivance of them.* When the peo- 

* Among the Temple Papers is a very voluminous collection of letters and documents 
connected with an illegal importation of molasses into Salem from Anguilla, a small island 
in the West Indies, marked on the cover, — "M r Cockle's Suspension, with the whole of 
his & Governor Bernard's proceedings relating to the Anguilla Forgeries, &c, &c. Copied 
from the Original Letters & Depositions, now in the Possession of M r Temple, the Surveyor 
General, 1764." The first document in the series is a letter from Mr. Temple to the Com- 
missioners of Customs, dated Oct. 3, 1764, rehearsing the facts in the case, and setting 
forth that " since the beginning of March last upwards of two thousand hogsheads of mo- 
losses and several other effects, the produce of foreign plantations," had been imported into 
Salem, and that the Collector, without the knowledge of the Surveyor-General, but "with 
the advice and concurrence of Governor Bernard in order to obtain their shares of the for- 
feitures," had compounded a suit in the Court of Vice-Admiralty, to the great loss of the 
King's revenue. " By the proceedure of M r Cockle, the whole sum compounded for, 
amounting to about twenty-five hundred pounds sterling, will be shared between him, Gov- 
ernor Bernard, and the Province, and his Majesty (if the composition is allowed) will loose 
upwards of five thousand pounds sterling of his revenue." And he adds, — " This method 
of compounding appears to me a perversion of the laws designed for the security of his 
Majesty's revenue to a direct contrary purpose, and if it is allow'd or can be supported, 
opens a door for the greatest frauds by corrupt officers conniving at irregular entries, then 
libelling for the forfeitures and entering into a composition, by which they may avail them- 
selves of large sums, and the importer at the same time (as the case may be managed 
between them) pay much less upon the whole than the amount of the duties, and his 
Majesty be defrauded of his revenue under the sanction of those very laws which were 
designed to secure it. Of this the present case affords a striking instance, where an officer 
of the revenue (whose conduct in other instances appears to have been grossly corrupt) 
with the advice and concurrence of an officer of the Crown of the first rank here, whose 
duty to his Majesty obliged him to give all the assistance in his power to secure the revenue, 

1764.] JOHN TEMPLE. 27 

pie who are prosecuted here for the illegal importation of 
their molosses find the necessity of their declaring the 
whole 'tis probable the offenders may be fully discovered. 
I have not suspended M r Cockle, the Collector of Salem, 
(altho I think he fully deserves it) as the service shall not 
suffer by his continuing in office till the will & pleasure 
of the Treasury be known. This officer has given me 
more trouble in keeping him tollerably to his duty than 
all the other officers in the district together, which he has 
been encouraged to do by Governor Bernard, whose in- 
satiable avarice exceeds any thing that I have ever met 
with. This M r Cockle is a low, abandoned man, not pos- 
sessed of one principal necessary to the trust reposed in him. 
M r Bernard was instrumental in getting him appointed 
to be Collector of Salem, & it is not doubted here that he 
receives the greatest part of the income of that office as 
well as of the gratuitys which I have no doubt M r Cockle 
has often taken. I have information of this many ways, 
tho I cannot get the partys to give me possitive proof. 
In the instance of which I have now wrote the Board of 
Customs the most favourable construction that I can put 
on M r Cockle & Governor Bernard's keeping me a week 
unacquainted with the letter that they receiv'd from 
Anguilla, is that what vessells were then in port under 
false clearances might escape before I could take the 
necessary steps for securing them to his Majesty's use. 
From Governor Bernard I have constantly met with every 
interruption that he could give me in office with any tol- 
lerable degree of safety to himself. In this instance you 

is found conducting an affair of this importance in such a manner as to avail themselves of 
considerable sums, under the colour of law, so greatly to the prejudice of the King's 
revenue." In a letter to the Commissioners of Customs, dated Nov. 30, 1764, Mr. Temple 
writes that under the composition "confirmed by the Court of Admiralty for Vsd part of 
the estimated value of said molosses," "the Governor gets about £800 ster.; M r Cockle 
about £800; the Province about £800; the Judge of Admiralty £90; the Advocate £90 ; 
the Marshal, Register, &c. of the Court their usual proportion, all for a composition hurried 
on & finished in a few days to the prejudice of his Majesty's revenue upwards of £5000 
ster." — Eds. 


will judge how faithful an officer he is to the Crown in 
keeping me unacquainted with the letter from Anguilla 
when he must have consider'd how necessary it was to 
the King's service that I should have the earliest intelli- 
gence of it, that I might inform the several Custom 
House officers in America to guard against such fraudu- 
lent papers, & to take all possible steps to recover the 
duty from those who had already got in. M r Bernard's 
interfering with me in Custom House matters (as he has 
so often done) weakens my power & influence over the 
officers, disconcerts me in the vigorous measures I am de- 
sirous of taking for the service of the revenue & often 
renders me very uneasy in an employment in which I can 
have no view but that of doing my duty so as to recoin- 
end myself to the government for such favours as I may 
hereafter meet with. For I hold myself ready on my re- 
turn to England to declare on the most solemn oath to 
Almighty God that I have never made one shilling since 
I have been in America but the sallary that has been 
given me from home, when M r Bernard's insatiable avarice 
has led him to draw an income from all quarters & from 
all departments in this Province in such a manner as it is 
a shame to his appointment. I have directed that prose- 
cutions be carried on against the importers of the molosses 
so fraudulently got in. Whither the Advocate General 
will be able to make any thing of it I dont know. Noth- 
ing shall be wanting on my part to bring the offenders to 
justice. I shall write to you again by the packet that will 
sail in a few days. In the mean time I am with the most 
sincere respect, dear Sir, 

Your most obedient and most humble servant. 

J. Temple. 

1764.] JOHN TEMPLE. 29 


Boston, N. E., 3 Octo. 1764. 

Dear Sir, — I had the pleasure to write a long letter 
to you on the 10 th of last month, and acquainted you with 
the difficultys I had met with in the execution of my office 
from M r Bernard, the Governor of this Province. Since I 
then wrote you I have received such proofs on oath of the 
corruption of M r Cockle, the Collector of Salem, that I 
have tho't it my indispencible duty to suspend him from 
that office.* The steps that have been taken here with 
regard to the forged clearances from Anguilla has given 
me more concern & trouble then any thing I have met 
with in office. The inclosed is an exact state of those 
affairs which I have transmitted to the Board of Customs, 
a copy of which I have taken the liberty to inclose to 
M r Grenville. I hope my conduct will meet with appro- 
bation, for I have endeavoured to do my duty as far as 
possible, and am verry sorry that in the course of it I have 
found so much reason to complain of M r Bernard. It 
seems as if the love of money had got the better of every 
good principal in this man. The suspension of M r Cockle 
has no doubt touch'd Gov r Bernard in a verry tender point, 
considering their lucrative connection. However, I have 
conscientiously done my duty void of all prejudice what- 
soever. This will be delivered to you by M r Harrison, 
the Collector of New Haven, a very sensible, ingenious 

* Mr. Temple's letter suspending Mr. Cockle is dated Sept. 28, 1764, and assigns the 
following reasons for the suspension, — " Having received information on oath that you 
took of David Glover, master of the sloop Glocester, a bribe of fifty pounds sterling, instead 
of the penalty due to his Majesty for the said sloop's breaking bulk before entry in May 
last; and for your keeping me a week unacquainted with a letter that you received from the 
Custom House officers at Anguilla of the greatest importance to his Majesty's revenue in 
America ; for your entering into a composition for the duties of near two thousand hogs- 
heads of molosses entered at your port from Anguilla, to the great injury of his Majesty's 
revenue; and above all for the insult offered me by j'ou in the tender of a bribe to pass 
over such your proceedings without punishment." Another letter of the same date directs 
Mr. Cockle to deliver to William Brown, Esq., appointed Collector, all the books, papers, 
&c, belonging to the office. — Eds. 


man. I have pleasure in the opportunity of recommend- 
ing him to your notice. If you shou'd have occasion to 
make any enquirys about this country, there are but few 
men more capable of giveing better information, and I 
believe his integrity may be depended upon. 

As we are now setting out with greatest exactness on 
the new act of Parliament, and the orders & instructions 
lately received from the Board of Customs, M r Cockle's 
removal may be attended with verry salutary consequences 
as a warning to others, tho' I must do them the justice to 
say that I do not suspect that there is now such a corrupt 
officer left in my district. We have already two or three 
vessells entered with foreign molasses at this port since 
the act took place & the three penny duty has been duly 
paid. The people seem tollerably reconciled to it. My 
expectations daily increase that the revenue on that article 
will become considerable. I have not yet rece'd an exact 
account of the molosses that has been got into my district 
under the forged clearances from Anguilla. But from a 
rough estimate it will exceed 5,000 hhds., the duties of 
which wou'd amount to more than <£13,000 sterling. 

I set out this evening for New York & y e Jerseys, a 
journey of more than 700 miles out & home. It is not 
possible for me to represent to you the fatigue & trouble 
that falls to my share, which has already injured a very 
good constitution. Do not forget to present my sincere 
respects to M r Wedderbourn, Webb, Col Clark, & to 
every member of that desirable party that I once was a 
member of in the happiest period of my life. Fortune 
cannot smile more on me then to bring me to such times 
again, and I will yet hope for them. I am, my dear Sir, 
with the most sincere esteem 

Your most obedient and most humble servant. 

J. Temple, 

To Tno s Whatelt, Esq t , Secretary to the Treasury. 

1764.] JOHN TEMPLE. 31 


Boston, 4 October, 1764. 

Dear Sir, — Give me leave to remind you of the favour 
that I ask'd of you on the 10 th of last month that in case 
the Lords of the Treasury think proper to appoint an- 
other to be Collector of Salem in the room of M r Cockle 
that you will interest yourself in favour of my bro r , Bob* 
Temple.* Believe me there is scarce anything that I 
have more at heart, for this reason (much more than for 
any views of interest) that it will give me weight in my 
employm* & prevent any attempt either upon my honor 
or the welfare of the revenue when it is found (notwith- 
standing Gov r Bernard's insinuations) that I am not only 
supported in removal of a corrupt abandoned officer, 
but that I have interest to get a good man in his place. 
You cannot oblige me more, & I shall esteem myself 
everlastingly obliged to you. I have 20/ a day in an em- 
ployment in which my whole time is taken up (with the 
greatest fatigue & trouble), & in which my expences 
amount to double the sallary. This cannot but have 
weight with M r Grenville, who acts upon principals of 
equity & justice. I am, d r Sir, 

Your most obd*. 

Tho s Whately, Esq e . 

* The letter of Sept. 10, as copied into the Letter-Book, does not contain the request of 
which Mr. Whately is hei-e reminded; but at the end of the copy is a memorandum to the 
effect that at the same time "a second letter" was written to Mr. Whately. Apparently 
a copy of the letter was not kept. See Mr. Whately's letter under date of Nov. 5, post, 
p. 36. Robert Temple, a Mandamus Councillor and a Loyalist refugee, was baptized at 
Christ Church, Boston, March 10, 1728; married Harriet, fourth daughter of Governor 
Shirley ; and died in Ireland in 1782. His eldest daughter married the third Lord Dufferin. 
For some further account of him see Sabine's American Loyalists, vol. ii. pp. 349, 350. — 



To the Honorable the Commons of Great Britain in Parliament 

The petition of the Council and House of Representatives 
of his Majesty's Province of Massachusetts Bay most 
humbly shevveth. 

That the act passed in the last session of Parliament 
intituled " An Act for granting certain duties in the British 
Colonies and Plantations in America, &c," must necessarily 
bring many burdens upon the inhabitants of those Colonies 
and Plantations, which your petitioners conceive would 
not have been imposed if a full representation of the state 
of the Colonies had been made to this honorable House. 

That the duties laid upon foreign sugars and molosses 
by a former Act of Parliament intituled " An Act for the 
better securing and encourageing the trade of his Majesty's 
Sugar Colonies in America," if the act had been executed 
with vigor, must have had the effect of an absolute prohi- 

That the duties laid on those articles by the present Act 
still remain so great that, however otherwise intended, 
they must undoubtedly have the same effect. 

That the importation of foreign molosses into this Pro- 
vince in particular, is of the greatest importance, and a 
prohibition will be prejudicial to many branches of its 
trade, and will lessen the consumption of the manufactures 
of Great Britain. 

* This petition appears to have originated in the Council, and was brought down to the 
House of Representatives, Nov. 1. 1764. It was there discussed at considerable length and 
amended, and was then sent back for concurrence. The next day the Council concurred 
unanimously in two of the amendments, and non-concurred unanimously in a third. The 
House then concurred, but added further amendments to which the Council refused to give 
their assent. A Committee of Conference was subsequently appointed, through whom an 
agreement was reached ; and the Secretary was authorized, in behalf of the Council, and 
the Speaker, in behalf of the House, to sign a fair draught. The copy from which we print 
is not signed, but is indorsed, " Sent." See Journal of the House of Representatives, 1764, 
pp. 129, 132, 133, 135.- Eds. 


That this importance dos not arise meerly nor principally 
from the necessity of foreign molosses in order to its being 
consumed or distilled within the Province. 

That if the trade for many years carried on for foreign 
molosses can be no longer continued, a vent cannot be 
found for more than one half the fish of inferior quality 
which is caught and cured by the inhabitants of the Pro- 
vince; the French permitting no fish to be carried by 
foreigners to any of their islands unless it be bartered or 
exchanged for molosses. 

That if there be no sale of fish of inferior quality, it 
will be impossible to continue the fishery; the fish usually 
sent to Europe will then cost so dear that the French will 
be able to undersell the English at all the European mar- 
kets, and by this means one of the most valuable returns 
to Great Britain will be utterly lost, and that great nursery 
of seamen destroyed. 

That the restraints laid upon the exportation of timber, 
boards, staves, and other lumber from the Colonies to 
Ireland and other parts of Europe, except Great Britain, 
must greatly affect the trade of this Province, and dis- 
courage the clearing and improving the lands which are 
yet uncultivated. 

That the powers given by the late Act to the Court of 
Vice Admiralty constituted over all America are so ex- 
pressed as to leave it doubtful whether goods siezed for 
illicit importation in any one of the Colonies may not be 
removed, in order to trial, to any other Colony where the 
Judge may reside, although at many hundred miles dis- 
tance from the place of siezure. 

That if this construction should be admitted, many 
persons, however legally their goods may have been im- 
ported, must lose their property, meerly from an inability 
of following after it, and making that defence which they 
might do if the trial had been in the Colony where the 
goods were siezed. 


That this construction would be so much the more 
grievous seeing that in America the officers by this 
Act are indemnified in case of seizure whensoever the 
Judge of Admiralty shall certify that there was prob- 
able cause, and the claimant can neither have costs nor 
maintain an action against the person siezing, how 
much soever he may have expended in defence of his 

That the extension of the powers of the Courts of 
Vice Admiralty have, so far as the jurisdiction of the 
said Courts hath been extended, deprived the Colonies 
of one of the most valuable of English liberties, trials 
by juries. 

That every Act of Parliament which in this respect dis- 
tinguishes his Majesty's subjects in the Colonies from their 
fellow subjects in Great Britain must create a very sensible 
concern and grief. 

That there have been communicated to your petitioners 
sundry resolutions of the House of Commons in their last 
session for imposing stamp duties or taxes upon the in- 
habitants of the Colonies, the consideration whereof was 
referred to the next session. 

That your petitioners acknowledge with all gratitude 
the tenderness of the Legislature of Great Britain of the 
liberties and priviledges of the subjects of the Colonies, 
who have always judged by their representatives both of 
the way and manner in which internal taxes should be 
raised within the respective governments, and of the ability 
of the inhabitants to pay them. 

That they humbly hope the Colonies in general have so 
demeaned themselves, more especially during the late war 
as still deserves the continuance of all those liberties and 
priviledges which they have hitherto enjoyed. 

That although during the war the taxes upon the Colo- 
nies were greater than they have been since the conclusion 
of it, yet the sources by which the inhabitants w r ere enabled 


to pay their taxes having ceased, and their trade being 
decayed they are not so able to pay the taxes they are 
subjected to in time of peace as they were the greater 
taxes in time of war. 

That one principal difficulty which has ever attended 
the trade of the Colonies proceeds from the scarcity of 
money, which scarcity is caused by the balance of trade 
with Great Britain, which has been continually against 
the Colonies. 1392785 

That the drawing sums of money from the Colonies 
from time to time must distress the trade to that degree 
that eventually Great Britain must lose more by the 
diminution of the consumption of her manufactures than 
all the sums which it is possible for the Colonies thus to 
pay can countervail. 

That they humbly conceive if the taxes which the in- 
habitants of this Province are obliged annually to pay 
towards the support of the internal government, the re- 
straint they are under in their trade for the benefit of 
Great Britain, and the consumption thereby occasioned of 
British manufactures be all considered, and have their 
due weight, it must appear that the subjects in this 
Province are as fully bnrthened as their fellow sub- 
jects in Britain, and that they are, whilst in America, 
more beneficial to the nation than they would be if 
they should be removed to Britain, and there held to a 
full proportion of the national taxes and duties of every 

Your petitioners therefore most humbly pray that they 
may be relieved from the burdens which they have humbly 
represented to have been brought upon them by the late 
Act of Parliament as to the wisdom of the honourable 
House shall seem meet, that the priviledges of the Colonies 
relative to their internal taxes which they have so long 
enjoyed may still be continued to them, or that the con- 
sideration of such taxes upon the Colonies may be re- 


f erred until your petitioners in conjunction with the 
other governments can have opportunity to make a more 
full representation of the state & condition of the Col- 
onies and the interest of Great Britain with regard to 


5 th Nov r , 1764. 

Dear Sir, — I am favoured with your letters of the 
10 th & 11 of September, and I received at the same time 
the packett of papers relative to the affair of Anguilla 
which you enclosed to me, and which I transmitted to the 
Custom House. Before I sent them thither I shewed them 
to M r Grenville, who had received a letter from you for 
which he desires me to return you his thanks. He will be 
obliged to you at all times for any information which you 
think deserving his notice. He always expresses the high- 
est satisfaction in your conduct, and he bids me assure 
you that you may depend upon all the support he can 
give you in the execution of an office which you fill with 
so much spirit and ability. The papers relative to An- 
guilla have since come from the Custom House officially 
before the Lords of the Treasury, who have entered in 
their Minutes their approbation of your behaviour and 
have ordered the dismission of M r Cockle.* I have upon 
this made y e application you desired for your brother to 
succeed him.t M r Grenville said that he should be very 
happy to have given you a mark of his favor, and hopes 
upon some other occasion he shall have an opportunity of 
doing it, but he thinks that to fill up a vacancy made upon 
your complaint with a person so nearly related to you 

* James Cockle had been collector of customs at Salem since 17G0. TTis dismission ap- 
pears to have been received with much favor in Salem and Boston. See liowe's Diary in 
2 Proceedings, vol. x. p. 60. — Eds. 

t See note, ante, p. 31. — Eds. 

1764.] THOMAS WHATELY. 37 

might expose you to reflections which however unjust 
might rather diminish than encrease your authority, & 
would at this juncture be prejudicial both to you and the 
service. Had the vacancy happened by any other means, 
I believe the merit you have with M r Grenville by your 
conduct would have been a strong recommendation of 
your brother ; it will be so should you ask for any thing 
else. I am sure you must see the weight of this consider- 
ation upon the present occasion. I am much obliged to 
you for the information you have given me on the other 
points about which I took the liberty to write to you. I 
cannot help flattering myself that the duty on molasses 
will not be found upon experiment so grievous as it is 
represented to be ; the alarm was raised on the measures 
that were taken for levying all the duties rigorously when 
this was at six pence. The same clamour is continued 
now that y e duty is lowered to three pence, and yet cer- 
tainly there cannot be the same ground for apprehension 
of mischief to the manufactory. I own I do not give en- 
tire credit to all the objections that are raised on your 
side of the water. I doubt they are inclined to object to 
all taxes, and yet some are absolutely necessary. Tho' 
" all the produce of the Colonies should go in the end to 
Great Britain for her manufactures," which I wish were 
more the case than it is, yet burthen'd as this coun- 
try is with debt and with expence, some attention must 
be had to revenue, and the Colonies must contribute their 
share ; tho' I believe, as there is no idea of charging them 
very highly, the part they will bear will be found much 
less than their proportion. The stamp act seems the 
easiest mode of collecting a considerable sum. What will 
be the rate and what the subjects of the several duties 
cannot yet be ascertained. They must differ in many 
particulars from those in Great Britain, but in which, and 
to what degree, will depend upon the information that 
will be received, before the passing of the law, of the 


produce to be expected from the several articles, and of 
the ability of the Colonies to bear the charge upon each. 
Any lights you can give me will be very welcome. I 
always loved the Colonies, I am, I always was, curious 
about them, and very happy when I am employed in any 
business that relates to them. The present circumstances 
of affairs gives me a great deal in my office, and the 
House of Commons must be full of the subject. Tho' 
much is done, much is still to do before that important 
and now vast object can be properly settled ; but I am 
confident it will be done right at last. I know that those 
who are at present in administration are anxious for the 
prosperity of the Colonies, and highly sensible of their 
importance. The revenue to be raised there has been a 
principal subject of consideration lately, and is so still ; 
& all that is to be aimed at seems to be to raise as much 
as the Colonies can without grievance supply towards re- 
lieving the mother country of part of her annual expence, 
to which surely they might contribute largely without 
difficulty, and ought to do so without complaining. I 
shall hope for the continuance of your correspondence 
upon all occasions. I shall always be happy to obey your 
commands if I can be of any service to you here. 

An alteration, I believe, will be made in the districts of 
the Surveyors in order to include the new conquests ; the 
whole continent is to be divided into three districts. You 
will by that means be relieved from the inspection of 
some provinces, but your salary is to be continued as be- 
fore ; you are besides to be allowed the additional clerk 
you apply for. You mention the detriment it will be to 
the Colonies to have so much of their money as shall be 
raised by y e tax remitted home ; but when that is to be 
applied to the support of troops there, and consequently 
will not be sent hither in order to be sent back, that in- 
convenience will be avoided. I am, &c. 

Dear Sir, — Since I wrote the above I am favour'd 

1764.] THOMAS WHATELY. 39 

with yours of 3 d Oct r last, with the proofs of M r Cockle's 
misbehaviour. His dismission will, I hope, be a warning 
to prevent such practices for the future & give weight to 
your authority over the officers in your district. An an- 
swer is received from Gov r Hopkins # to your complaint 
against him, which is order'd to be sent to you for you to 
reply to. You will find warm expressions are laid hold 
of there, & you may depend upon it you will always be 
liable to have all y e words taken notice of, & perhaps ex- 
aggerated, which may drop from you in the disputes you 
must be continually engaged in. I do not suppose you 
ever use any that are blameable, but you will excuse me 
for presuming as your friend just to hint that to men in 
office nothing is of more consequence than the utmost 
temperance of language. The least slip is made a matter 
of complaint, & with a little heightening is retorted upon 
them against the complaints they make of others, which 
gives y e accused persons an advantage over their accusers. 
M r Harrison, who brought me your letter, left it at my 
house when I was out, & I have not been able yet to find 
his lodgings, tho' I have enquired much after them. 
When T can meet with him, I shall be very happy to shew 
him all y e civilities which your friends may always depend 
upon from me, & which his own character entitles him to 
from every body. The news you sent of the taking place 
of the new act & of the entry of some melasses was the 
first intelligence received here concerning it, & must give 
pleasure. I have no doubt that a little time & reflection 
will reconcile your people to the duty on melasses, & your 
account seems to promise that it will be so. Your friends 
"Webb & Wedderburn are well & desire their best respects 
to you. 

Always, with perfect esteem, your most faithful & 
obedient serv*. 

Thomas Whately. 

Treasury Chambers, 8* h Dec r , 1764. 

* Stephen Hopkins, Governor of Rhode Island. — Eds. 



Boston, 1 st Decern', 1764. 

Dear Sir, — I very much fear that I shall tire your 
patience on a subject that must be dry & uninteresting to 
you. But as I have troubled you with what has occurr'd, 
I now send you the remainder, that you may see what a 
seen of corruption has taken place in this country. Gov r 
Bernard's resentment to me is great, & I believe sincere, 
as 'tis generally thought I have removed the best milch 
cow he had. Upon my honor I believe M r Cockle's office 
produced him near as much as the honest income of his 
goverment. I am now threatned with the interest of his 
friends against me, which, I hear, he says he will move 
to the utmost ; however that may be, on my own integrity 
& the uprightness of Ministry I rely, regardless of such 
threats from a man whose God seems to be money. I 
have, as I apprehend, faithfully done my duty, & I shou'd 
but ill deserve the trust reposed in me had I omitted any 
part that I have acted. I received your last favour yes- 
terday by the packet, & will not fail to comply with every 
part of it, for I am, with the greatest esteem & friendship, 
my dear Sir, Yours, &c a ., &c\, &c\ 

Inclosed is copy of M r Cockle's defence, with my 
remarks in the margent, copy of my letter to the Board 
of Customs, & copys of such depositions as have been since 
given me, setting forth M r Cockle's corruption. 

Tiio 8 Wiiatley, Esq". 


Boston, 9 Dec r , 1764. 
Dear Sir, — I wrote you a long letter yesterday upon 
business. * I hope not to be so troublesome to you again, 

* The letter referred to was not copied into Mr. Temple's Letter- Book. — Eds. 

1765.] JOHN TEMPLE. 41 

but that my letters may be such as will afford you some 
amusement. I am preparing the answer to all the questions 
that you have asked me which you shall have by the next 
packet. I have just now finished a letter to M r Grenville, 
in which I have taken the liberty to ask his friendship to 
my brother. I have not perticularly mentioned the Collec- 
torship of Salem, tho' nothing wou'd give me more sattisf ac- 
tion. I wou'd have ask'd M r Grenville to give him that 
place in perticular had I not myself made the vacancy, 
which might look as if I had been the more desirous to re- 
move an officer for the sake of having my brother provided 
for. Inclosed I send you a letter that M r Grenville wrote 
me some years ago ; if you think it will be of service & not 
improper, I will be obliged to you to shew it to him. He 
will then recollect that he once before interested himself 
in my bro r ' s fav r , tho' unluckily it happen'd to be too late. 
I am, dear Sir. 


Boston, N. E., 10 Jan., 1765. 

My dear Sir, — My last to you was of the 9 th of Dec r , 
since which I have rec d two more depositions of M r 
Cockle's corruption, and have by this oppertunity inclosed 
them to M r Grenville, with seven others that I had before 
transmitted home. Since the suspension of M r Cockle, 
Gov r Bernard's resentm fc is become almost implacable and 
without bounds. He is taking much pains to find matter 
against me, and for want of something more material he 
is endeavouring to palm upon me every idle expression of 
contempt relating to him which his own conduct has made 
common in this country. Upon such materials he is 
forming complaints to be transmitted home ; threatens 

* This is the last letter from Mr. Temple to Mr. Whately which was copied into Mr. 
Temple's Letter-Book. The later letters in the book, which ends with April, 1768, are 
almost exclusively of an official character. — Eds. 


me with his interest, and, I am told, openly boasts that 
he will engage M r Jackson and M r Secretary Pownall 
against me, but of which I am not very apprehensive, 
having too high an opinion of those gent n to imagine that 
they will become my enemys at his request, having never 
knowingly done anything that could displease either of 
them. On the contrary I have always acknowledged the 
obliging civilitys I rec d when in England both from M r 
Jackson & M r Secretary Pownal, and as I apprehend you 
must be acquainted with those gentlemen, you will very 
much oblige me in presenting my best respects to them, 
and believe me to be, my dear Sir, 

Sincerely yours, 

J. Temple. 

Tho 8 Whately, Esq*. 


London, Jan 1 ? 12 th , 1765. 

Sir, — I have at length the pleasure of writing to you 
from London. This is my first opportunity, which I 
gladly embrace agreeable to your request. Wee arrived 
safe at Portsmouth after a passage of 6 weeks and 4 days 
from New London. Nothing material attended our voy- 
age. We had the usual variety of rough and smooth 
seas, hard and moderate gales with other incidents that 
generally crowd a seaman's journal, so that by good or ill 
fortune (which you please) I have no wonders to relate in 
a journey of 3300 miles. 

I unluckily happened to get lame by an accident at 
Portsmouth, which confined me there a week ; and I was 

* Joseph Harrison was at one time collector of customs at New Haven, Conn., and 
went to England in October, 1704, with Jared Ingersoll. (See Conn. Col. Recs., vol. xii. p. 
300, note.) In the early part of 176G he was an assistant to Edmund Burke, private 
secretary to Lord Rockingham. He was collector of customs at Boston at the time of the 
destruction of the tea, and for some years previousl}-, having been in office as early at least 
as Nov. 1, 17G6. — Eds. 


3 or 4 days in town before I was able to stirr abroad. My 
first visits were to M r Jackson and M r Whateley, and 
was by the latter introduced to M r Greenville, to whom I 
delivered your letter. He made some general enquirys 
relating to the late Act of Parliament, and the sentiments 
of the people in America about it; but I found that 
he did not like to hear that there should be any surmise 
of its not being likely to produce the sum expected, 
which I am affraid has been estimated much too high, and 
I am very sensible will fall vastly short of the sanguine 
hopes that have been entertained about it. After a short 
conversation M r Greenville referr'd me to his Secretary 
for any thing further I might have to communicate to 
him. M r Jackson has lately been made private secretary 
to M r Greenville, and generally suppos'd to have consider- 
able influence with him, and being also your very good 
friend, I concluded he would be the properest person to 
depend on in the affair of the Salem Collectors!) ip. And 
accordingly I took the earliest oppertunity after my ar- 
rival here of talking to him on the subject, relating to the 
application in behalf of your brother. On which occasion 
I urg'd every argument I could think on that might be 
likely to promote his obtaining it, particularly that in the 
exercise of the commission with which you are at present 
invested nothing could tend more to strengthen your 
hands, and enable you to execute those powers w T ith ad- 
vantage to the Crown than an opinion of your having 
influence with, and being well supported by the ruling 
powers here at home, of which nothing could be a more 
striking demonstration than the appointment of your 
brother to this Collectorship, whose integrity and abilities 
it would have been unjust in me not to have recommended 
with the utmost zeal, as I verily believe him to be one of 
the best men living. I was aware that a difficulty might 
be started from a surmise that your suspending M r Cockle 
might have been done with a view of making a vacancy 


for your brother, &c., but this I apprehended I could effec- 
tually obviate, having purposely had some conversation 
with M r Innian at Cambridge on the subject of M r Cockle's 
demerits, in consequence of which I was enabled to assure 
M r Jackson from my own knowledge that even his friends 
and most intimate acquaintance had given him up, and 
that you could not with any kind of propriety or regard 
for your own charracter have delay'd any longer to dis- 
place him. This, I was in hopes would have had some effect, 
and it was a great mortification to me when I heard that 
one M r Fisher # is finally appointed to the office. M r Jack- 
son will no doubt inform you of the motive for this deter- 
mination, which I cannot explain, but I sincerely condole 
with your brother on the disappointment. 

I have not yet had any oppertunity with the Commis- 
sioners ; but I have been introduced to M r Corbyn Morris, 
from whom I understand that your conduct is highly ap- 
plauded, particularly your spirited behaviour to Governour 
Bernard on Cockle's affair, concerning which I am told by 
M r Whateley he will soon be called to a severe acco 4 . With 
regard to the difficulties and ambiguities relating to the 
Act of Parliament, I can't find that any body here cares 
to give their opinion, but leave it to every particular 
officer to put his own construction. However, I believe 
some amendments will be made this session of Parliament, 
particularly relating to the prohibition of carrying lumber 
to Ireland which seems to have been an oversight in 
drawing up the act. 

The Parliament met last Thursday, and the minority 
still continue their opposition, but I fancy will make no 
great figure this sessions. Several party pamphlets have 
been published lately, some of which I shall send you by a 
ship bound to Boston. M r Otis's Rights of the British 

* James Fisher was appointed in 1765 collector of customs at Salem, the duties of the 
office, after Cockle's dismission, having been temporarily discharged by William Brown. 
See Felt's Annals of Salera, vol. ii. p. 380. — Eds. 

1765.] JOHN NELSON. 45 

Colonies has been reprinted here, and I am told gives 
great offence to the Ministry. The affair of the Stamp 
duty seems to be resolved on ; so your people may as well 
make themselves easy about it. My complim* 8 to your 
brother, M r Inman, & M r Hale. I am, S r , 
Yo r most obed* humble serv*. 

Jos H Harrison. 

I should be extreamly glad if you would favour me 
with a line when you have leisure. Direct for me at 
M r Sherwood's, in Warnford Court, Throgmorton Street. 


[February, 1765.] 

My dear Jack, — By Capt Hunter you and my friends 
I hope before this comes to hand have heard perticularly 
of me and my affairs. I do not send you copy by this 
opp ty as the bearer can tell you allmost every thing I have 
mett with or felt; so that I do not design to pleasure 
myself by repetion of the one or to discompose myself by 
relating the other, but refer you to him who is a very 
honest good young man ; and I have discover' d so much 
cleverness in him at the time of my greatest distreses, 
when those I was more acquainted with, and had depend- 
ence on, forsook me, that I shall ever esteem him, and I 
shall be obliged to you and M r Temple if you would take 
notice of him. I write no one but you by this ship. 
Therefore I leave it intirely to your judgement wether 
there be any occasion to introduce him to another quar- 
ter, as that depends on circumstances that you must be 
best acquainted with. 

* John Nelson, a grandson of the well-known Colonial merchant who took a conspicuous 
part in the New England Revolution of 1689, was born in Boston, Dec. 12, 1730, and died 
unmarried, in the island of Grenada, in 1784. — Eds. 


Next to that of making you known to M r Montgomery 
and telling you I think him a man of strict truth, I in- 

Ct qrs lbs 

tended this letter for the purpose of inclosing you 0. 2. 
of Parliamentary Resolves, which according to my little 
judgement of the state of the Colonies seems to threaten 
allmost the destruction of some of them, considering the 
heavey taxes of last year, tho' I may assure you there is 
reason for hope of some releif in respect of some of those. 
The most staunch freinds to the Colonies wishes they had 
not been so obstinate in the point of Right that the Crown 
had of imposing taxes. I am led to suppose they must 
have been wrong, because both within doors and without 
all I have heard speak on the subject at once give it 
against the Provinces, and allow the Power & Right. I 
have had an opp ty of hearing much on both sides, and even 
that great advocate Coll Barry* at the grand debates 
fell in with the whole House in that respect, but at same 
time endeavor'd to appologize for their so doing, giving 
for reason, their distresses urged them ; and in every re- 
spect spoke so feelingly and like a hero for them, that 
altho' it had no effect he allmost deserves a monument 
among you for his attachment to America. He most 
strongly reccommended that if there must be a tax laid, 
tho' he could wish there was to be none, that the Provinces 
might be indulged with the liberty as heretofore of furnish- 
ing their quotas of any sums required and colecting it in 
their own modes. He said he dreaded the consequences if 
the Act should pass, and that he knew the inhabitants 
trembled for fear. When a motion was made for adjourn- 
ing for a few days he immediately seconded it in order to 
make further inquireys and to be better prepared, but, says 
he, I should with greater pleasure second a motion that it 
might never be bro't on the carpet again. For altho' 
Great Brittain has an undoubted right, yet he presumed 

* Col. Isaac Barr£. The references are to his speech in opposition to the passage of the 
Stamp Act. —Eds. 

1765.J JOHN NELSON". 47 

its authority ought to be exercised with the same tender- 
ness as parents do theirs over their children, and not lay- 
too heavey burthens upon them in infancy, least they 
prevent their growth or deform them. In short he used 
every argument in favor of the Colonys, by which he 
merits their esteem. But all his eloquence and fine address 
could avail nothing. The thing took such a turn the other 
way that there was 240 odd against 30. Its had a second 
reading, and will undoubtedly pass without amendment, 
and God have mercy on you, for I do not know where 
you'l get mony enough to pay even for stamps. I have 
been ask'd what I thought of it. I ventured to say that 
my oppinion was that all the sterl g mony circulating in the 
Provinces would not be sufficient for that, and paying the 
late duties imposed. I could have wished that some who 
knew the perticular state of each Colony, & their Consti- 
tution, had some of the opp tys that I have had ; they might 
perhaps produced good effects, for I must confess I am 
not so well acquainted with the different conditions and 
constitutions of the several goverments as I ought to be. 
Therefore it would be absurd for me to pretend to enter 
on perticulars. As to trade I have spoke my sentiments, 
and also by desire reduced them to writing, which I can 
convey to you in a few words, by saying they are different 
from all most every article of the late Act. To make it 
appear impartial I have also signifyed that by my connec- 
tions in the West Indies I speake against my own interest ; 
that as the act stands it would be in favor of the Islands ; 
that I never expected to be in trade again, & little reason 
to suppose but what it would be as likely that I took up 
my residence in another part of the world as that. Every 
little effort of mine shall be joined with those of the freinds 
to America, and I wish that all the mites togather might 
turn the ball ce in favor. I wish I could say there was 
any tollerable prospect, and I with every body else wish 
likewise, that instead of disputing about Eight or Privi- 


ledges that the Provinces had tho't proper to let it alone 
for another time, and pleaded their inabillity, their debts, 
& c , & c . Its tho't that would have been productive of better 
consequences. The steps taken seemed generally resented 
by the whole House of Commons, and its imagined many 
have received prejudices on that acco\ There has been 
many independent pamphlets, and some addresses tending 
that way, which have done the Provinces no service, and 
was the occasion that none of the latter was allowed to be 
read. One from Virginia was begun, as one of the mildest, 
with the hopes of the rest following, but it was stoped by 
a great majority. 

I did not think to have wrote you so long a letter, but 
to be plain with you, I had nothing this evening to do, & 
I dont know that I should not add much to it but for the 
clock's telling me it 's time to go to bed. Do tell my dear 
Bob to think of what I wrote him, and that I think he 
will hear from a person that will join a sum with him 
soon, if he likes. I was at Lord Gage's the other day 
when your health was given by him. Your friend M r 
Steward desires his compliments, as does S r George, and 
that very w r orthy man M r Jackson. He is very much your 
freind. Remember me to every body, and allways beleive 
me, my clear S r , 

Yours sincerely ; 

Jn° Nelson. 

P. S. I had forgot to tell you, I have a small addition 
to my income since I last wrote. A gentleman has put 
an est a of 150 h ds under my care & direction, on which 
there will be a commission, & but little trouble. 

Some alterations in your Province is talked of. I have 
taken passage in Capt. Reed bound to Madeira & Granada, 
sails ab* 1 st March. I believe it more likely the 10 th . 



[February, 1765.] 

. . . the appellation of a great measure on account of 
the important point it establishes, the right of Parliament 
to lay an internal tax upon the Colonies. We wonder 
here that it ever was doubted. There is not a single 
member of Parliament to be found that will dispute it, & 
the proposition of a stamp duty seem'd so reasonable when 
made last week to the House, that but 49 divided against 
it, when 245 were for it, & the expediency only was de- 
bated. This puts an end to all opposition to the principle 
of the bill, & now the rates are the only question. I sup- 
pose you must be curious to know what they are, but I 
cannot gratify your curiosity with a copy of the resolutions. 
I can, however, give you a general plan of the bill as it is 
intended to be offer'd to the House. The proceedings in 
Courts of Justice are rated variously as to the proportion 
they bear to the English duties ; some are as high, others 
do not amount to half as much, so that I believe one with 
another they may be reckon'd at three fourths or two thirds 
of the duties we pay, but lying in general lightest on those 
you use most. The law instruments, such as deeds, bonds, 
&c a , are charg'd nearly the same as the English, except 
conveyances of land & bonds for the payment of money. 
The former of these are upon a very different footing 
from ours, being proportion'd to the quantity of land con- 
vey'd. With us they are all rated alike whether the estate 
they relate to be of five pounds or fifty thousand pounds 
value. In the Colonies it is proposed that a conveyance 
of 100 acres shall pay I s 6% of 200 acres 2 s , & of 320 
acres 2 s - 6 d -, which is the English duty ; so that all below 
that quantity is lighter taxed than here, but on the other 

* The first part of this letter — probably about a third of the letter — has not been found. 
— Eds. 



hand all above that quantity will be higher, as an additional 
2 8 - 6 d - is proposed to be charged upon every additional 320 
acres, & this duty being applicable equally to grants, it is 
hoped the effect may be some check to those enormous 
grants & conveyances which are so detrimental to the 
Colonies. Land in the West Indies being much more 
valuable than with you, it is taxed just double in all these 
proportions. Another difference between them & you is 
in bonds for payment of money. All theirs are charged 
with the English duties ; your small bonds below £40 are 
much lower. Probates of wills & letters of administration 
are rated in the West Indies as high as in England ; in 
North America at but half as much. Commissions & 
appointments to offices are also charged as high in the 
Islands as they are here ; but on the continent at no more 
than two thirds ; & all commissions of the army, navy, 
militia, & justices of the peace are entirely excepted. 
Your annual offices too are lightly taxed. It is not so in 
England. We do not propose to charge your admissions 
into corporations, which would fall upon y e continent only, 
& very heavy upon the charter governments. All licenses 
& certificates of marriage too are exempted. Pardons & 
some others of less note which pay in England are not 
taxed in the Colonies. Your licences for spirituous liquors 
are rated as low as our ale licenses, which is a very great 
disproportion, & your wine licenses much lower than ours. 
Cards, dice, newspapers, & advertisements will be the 
same as here, but there are many things charged here 
which are not in use amongst you, such as debentures, 
conveyances of copyhold estates, &c a . On the other hand 
there are but few rated in the Colonies which are not rated 
here. The only one of any consequence is the cockets ; 
but they are charged with no more than a 4 d - duty, & that 
is put on more to prevent frauds than to procure revenue. 
The Anguilla clearances gave the hint of the precaution. 
Indeed, many of the duties will have a like effect in other 

1765.] THOMAS WHATELY. 51 

instances. Your publick registers too are taxed with 3 d * 
upon every entry, but then the deeds to be enter' d are 
charged with 3 d - less than in England. The whole money 
to be raised is appropriated to the defence of the Colonies, 
& will consequently never be drawn out of them ; so that 
the only effect of the tax will be that we shall send so 
much less than we have hitherto, & after all we shall still 
send by much the greater part of the money required for 
that purpose, & more than we did during y e last peace. 
This is the general plan of the proposed tax. You know 
it is subject to great alterations in going thro' the House, 
before it will be pass'd into a law, but if it should come 
out nearly as it has been first proposed, do you think 
sincerely that the Colonists will have reason to complain 
of a grievance, when they consider how much we are 
burthen'd ? I could fill many pages with the subject, but 
have not time at present. I wish only to give you facts 
for you to judge whether there is a want of proper atten- 
tion to the Colonies. I am sure there is no want of regard 
to them. The lumber, I believe, will be allow 'd to be 
carried to Ireland, & all other reasonable advantages will 
be given to them. Is there any truth in a report we have 
of some orders issued against you in Rhode Island ? I 
should be glad to know what they are. You must pardon 
this hasty scrawl. It is with difficulty I find time to write 
to you at all, but I could not let this oppertunity pass 
without acknowledging your favours & assuring you that 
I am 

Sincerely yours. 

T. Whatelt. 

Ingersal * has been much with me. Gov r Hamilton is 
arrived. They both dine with me to-morrow, & we shall 
wish you of y e party. 

* See note ante, p. 19. — Eds. 



Treasury Chambers, 10 May, 1765. 

Dear Sir, — I am much obliged to you for the two 
pamphlets you sent me on the question of the right of the 
Parliament of Great Britain to tax the Colonies. The 
answer to Governor Hopkins seems to me very sensible 
& fully confutes his arguments. That part which is a per- 
sonal attack upon him I cannot judge of as I do not know 
him, & in general I wish such reflections spared ; but the 
argumentative part I think very conclusive, & I am glad to 
find that there are men in America who have consider'd the 
true state of the case, & do not run away with y e gen- 
eral current into a proposition so untenable as that an 
acknowledged sovereign legislature cannot lay taxes. 
The matter has been debated here tho' very weakly. 
I will in return for your pamphlets send you two or three 
on y e subject which seem to me the best. Our old friend 
Ingersol will bring them to you from me. He proposes 
soon to set out for Boston in his way home, & will, I am 
sure, undertake the care of any packet I may send by him. 
He returns y e distributor of stamps for Connecticut, which 
M r Grenville has very freely given to him as a person very 
proper to be put into the office. He has endeavour' d to 
direct his choice throughout to the most proper persons. 
Hitherto, except in the new colonies, he has confined him- 
self to colonists, & those of the most respectable people in 
their several provinces. They will find their account in 
it, both as a place of emolument & of influence, as the 
appointment of the under distributors will be left to them, 
I believe, entirely. I have received your favours of the 
8 th & 20 th Feb ry . The affair between you & Governor 
Bernard has not, I understand, been yet decided on by the 
Council. The Parliamentary business has been so heavy 

1765.] THOMAS WHATELT. . 53 

as to engross entirely all the attention of y e ministers & of 
the offices ; not that they have met with any opposition 
worth mentioning. In that respect the sessions has been 
as easy as it was possible ; but I believe there never was 
so much publick business transacted within the time. 
Among others a bill is now before y e House which relates 
almost entirely to the colonies. It is intended to remove 
all reasonable objections to the act of last year ; to allow 
the passage of all vessels without decks within a certain 
distance of the shore & under certain descriptions without 
taking out cockets ; to settle as far as we can settle, un- 
informed as we are, the fees of the Custom House officers, 
but this is only a temporary provision which must be 
made more particular & more precise next winter, when 
we shall know more exactly the state of that affair ; 
to extend the liberty of exporting rice to North Carolina, 
which is not included in the act of last year ; to take off 
the last duty on coffee of y e growth of our own islands, 
in order to encourage the cultivation of it ; to permit the 
exportation of iron directly from the colonies to Ireland 
as well as to Great Britain, & the exportation of lumber 
not only to Ireland but also to the Madeiras, the Azores, 
& any part of Europe to the southward of Cape Finisterre ; 
& for the further encouragement of the Americans it is 
proposed to grant a bounty of about twenty shillings on 
120 deals, planks, or boards of 10 feet long, 10 inches 
wide, & lj inch thick, with a proportionable bounty on 
other timber. This to continue for three years, then to 
be reduced to 15 shillings for three years more, & 
for y e next period of three years to ten. This bounty 
in y e present state of the trade will enable y e merchant 
to bring a cargo of deals or timber, & make himself whole. 
Under y e encouragement of this bounty it is hoped that the 
Americans will find it worth their while to improve their 
saw mills & to build ships on purpose for bringing timber, 
& then y e profits will be greater, so as it is hoped to enable 


the colonies hereafter to supply all the consumption of 
Great Britain. This subject has naturally drawn M r 
Grenville's attention very much to the state of the King's 
woods, which are represented to him to have been very 
much neglected, & I therefore think it very probable 
that some considerable alteration may be made in that 
department. Should there happen a vacancy in the office 
of Surveyor General of the Woods, which seems to me 
very probable, it has occured to me that the place would 
probably suit your brother.* You have often desired me 
to mention him to M r Grenville. You may be sure I 
have done so, but I could only do it in general terms, 
as there was no specific office in view, except that of 
Collector of Salem, which you yourself saw afterwards 
could not properly be given to him. M r Grenville has 
always received this general application in a manner that 
shew'd his good-will to your family, & I would on that 
ground suggest your brother to be the Surveyor Gen 1 of 
the Woods, in case of a vacancy, if I knew your & his 
sentiments upon it. No alteration, you may be sure, 
would be thought of but with a view to have the office 
fill'd in a much better manner than it has been hitherto. 
Great attention & activity will be necessary, & as that 
would occasion a change in your brother's manner of life 
I cannot mention the subject without knowing his wishes 
upon it. He may freely communicate them to me, as in 
case no vacancy should be made, or it should be fill'd with 
another, I shall take care not to say any thing about it 
which he would wish not to have said, if he does not 
succeed. I trust to him & to you that you will observe 
the like caution, & not mention to any body on your side 
of the water that it is probable Governor Wentworth may 
be removed from that office, & that it is certain that the 
Governor & the Surveyor of the Woods will never again 

* Robert Temple. Benning Wentworth, Governor of New Hampshire, was Sur- 
veyor General of the Woods. — Eds. 

1765.] THOMAS WHATELY. 55 

be the same person. I have had the pleasure this winter 
of being acquainted with M r Neilson,* who, I understand, 
is nearly related to you, & stands in the same degree of 
relation as yourself to the Grenville family. M r Grenville 
has appointed him Collector of Nevis, whither he is now 
gone. The place, I believe, is worth four or five hundred 
a year, & entirely consistent with his views of settling in 
that part of the world. M r Meserve, son to the Coll., is 
appointed distributor of stamps for New Hampshire ; 
M r Johnstone for Rhode Island ; M r M c Evers for New 
York ; & M r Oliver for Massachusetts. The latter 
gentleman I have known all my life by name, tho' never 
personally, & I suppose there could not have been a better 
person chosen. An uncle of mine of the name of 
Thompson had long an estate of his in your country 
under his management. A near relation of mine has it 
now, & I have myself a little piece of uncultivated land 
which requires no management, but which he has some- 
times been troubled with, so that he is a sort of family 
acquaintance. I have always heard a great character of 
him, & I was glad that the office was given to so very 
respectable a person. There is a gentleman, I understand, 
coming over who does not know me even by name, but 
of whom I have heard much, a M r Hutchinson. t I should 
be obliged to you if you could contrive that I might be 
acquainted with him, whilst he is here, by giving him a 
letter to me, or by any other means you may think proper. 
Our old acquaintance Governor Hamilton is in London, 
& I am afraid but in an indifferent state of health. 
He has an eruption on his nose which he fears may be 
cancerous, tho', I understand, y e physicians here rather 
give him hopes that it will not prove so. It is, however, 
a doubtful case, & that I think a bad one, when such a 
terrible distemper is the prospect. I hope to hear from 

* John Nelson. He was a cousin of John Temple. See notes, ante, p. 3. — Eds. 
t Thomas Hutchinson, afterward Governor of Massachusetts. — Eds. 


you by y c return of y e packet. You will hear from me 
by Ingersol. I am with great truth, 

Your most obed fc serv*. 

Thomas Whately. 

If your brother wishes to apply to be Surveyor of y e 
Woods, you must tell me his Christian name. 

13 th May, 1765. 

Dear Sir, — I have been prevented by an accident 
from sending this by the packet, but the opportunity of a 
private conveyance has offer'd by the way of New York, 
& the delay occasions the addition of a pamphlet to tell 
you of the alteration intended in the Vice Admiralty Court. 
It having been represented that the option of carrying all 
causes within that jurisdiction to Halifax might be made 
a great grievance, it is proposed to divide all North 
America into three districts ; to have a Court of Vice 
Admiralty for each, & to confine all causes to the Court 
of y e district. The division is not yet exactly fixed, 
but the places where the Courts are to sit will, I believe, 
be Boston, Philadelphia, & Charles Town. Each will 
have a jurisdiction over the neighbouring provinces only, 
& so situated there will be no part of the continent 
further distant from that which it is subject to than 
many parts of England are from the Exchequer. The 
Judges will have very large salaries, & great care taken 
in the choice of them. They will each have in their 
district the same powers as is now in the Court at Halifax 
over all America, with this alteration that they will not 
only have original jurisdiction, but also be Courts of 
Appeal from y e Provincial Vice Admiralty Courts, all 
which }'ou will see provided for in y e stamp act, on y e 
presumption that these additional Courts are to be estab- 

T. W. 



London, June 12 th , 1765. 

Sir, — The last letter I wrote you was from Bawtry, 
dated April 25 th , just to acknowledge the receipt of yours 
of Jan y 10 th , which is the only letter I have yet received 
from you. I have been about 3 weeks in town, where 
there has lately been the strangest confused scene of riot 
and disorder in the city, and political squabbles at Court, 
that can possibly be imagined. So many turns and over- 
turns happened during the space of a few days that it 
will be impossible to give you a tollerable idea of those 
several transactions within the compass of a letter, even 
tho' I was well informed of all the intrigues of the 
parties concerned, which is farr from being the case ; 
and tho' many accounts are given of the affair, I am apt 
to think the publick are yet strangers to the secret. M r 
Ingersoll (who is passenger on board the ship this goes by) 
can give you the common talk of the town on the subject, 
and perhaps something more as he is acquainted with 
M r Jackson and M r Whateley. However, every thing is 
now quiet with regard to the mobbs ; and by a happy 
union of the two parties in the Grenville family 'tis 
generally supposed the administration will be wholly 
in their hands. The minority was quite out of the 
question in the late disputes, which seems to have been 
a tryal of strength between the favourite and the min- 
istry, in which the latter have had the advantage, but 
whether the victory is complete, — in other words, whether 
the favourite does not yet hold his influence behind the 
curtain is a doubt with many, and what time only can 

M r Cockle's memorial was absolutely rejected by the 
Commissioners of the Customs, and his dismission con- 
firmed, which must needs be no small mortification to the 
composers of that laboured performance. What other use 


has been made of it I have not yet heard. I find that 
M r Jackson is appointed agent for the Province of Massa- 
chusets Bay, and 'tis said this was done by the influence 
of Govern 1- B — d, and if so I conclude 'tis with a view of 
engaging that gentleman in his interest, but as I have not 
yet seen M r Jackson, I cannot tell what grounds there 
may be for such a surmise ; in the meantime you may 
perhaps pick out something from M r Ingersoll on the 
subject as they two were very intimate. 

I have been to see M r Bollan, and I dare say he has now 
no doubt but that you have been his friend. He designs 
very soon for Boston. 

The Commiss r8 of the Customs have reported in my 
favour to the Treasury ; the substance of which is that 
my salary shall be paid out of the American fund, and 
encreased to <£60 f annum, but nothing further has been 
done about it, so I am yet in suspence as to the event. 

My complim ts to your brother, I am, S r 

Yo r most obed* humble serv*. 

Jos H Harrison. 

Jn° Temple, Esq b . 


Treasury Chambers, 12 June, 1765. 

Dear Sir, — I take the opportunity of Ingersol's re- 
turn to America to send you the pamphlets I promised 
you, the copy of my last of 10 th & 13 th May, & this letter. 
He has spent some months amongst us, I am afraid with 
less satisfaction than he enjoyed in his former visit, as he 
did not find the objects he has met with so striking or the 
entertainments of England so amusing as they seemed on 
his first acquaintance with them, & I doubt whether he 
will ever allow them to allure him over again. It has, 
however, given me great pleasure, that if his voyage has 
not been so agreable, it has been more advantageous, & 

1765.] THOMAS WHATELY. 59 

has been the means of fixing him in the employment of 
distributor of stamps, for which he has qualified himself 
by his enquiries here with great assiduity, & I hope his 
thorough knowledge of the business will prevent many 
doubts & difficulties in the execution of it. 

I find your people still alarm'd with the idea of their 
country being drain'd of all their money by the new 
taxes. The fact is that no more will be remitted from 
thence hither than will just be sufficient to pay the ex- 
pence of office here, which will be very inconsiderable. 
Notwithstanding the aid of all these duties a very con- 
siderable remittance must be still made to America for the 
support of the military establishment there. For my own 
part I should suppose two thirds of what has been lately 
must continue still to be sent from England, & that is 
more than ever was sent in any former peace. The 
Colonies certainly will not furnish one third of the present 
expence, as far as I am able to calculate the probable prod- 
uce of these taxes, & as the ballance will be thus greatly 
in their favour, the remittance must be thither. It will be 
contrived nearly in this manner. The Paymaster General 
wanting to remit money for subsistence, &c a , will apply to 
the Commissioners of Customs or Stamps for bills or 
orders upon their officers in the Colonies. These officers 
will in consequence thereof pay over the money in their 
hands to the deputy paymasters, & whatever sums shall 
be thus advanced in America will be paid here by the 
Paymaster General to the Commissioners of Customs or 
Stamps, who will pay the same into the Exchequer as 
American revenue in conformity to the act. Thus the 
whole effect of these laws with respect to money will be 
no more than this, that supposing the expence of the mili- 
tary establishment in the Colonies should be £300,000 f 
ann. (which is much less than it really is) and supposing 
the American taxes should be £100,000 (which is more 
than I expect from them), then instead of £300,000 now 


remitted, Great Britain will remit but £200,000 ; but 
America will remit none hither. On the contrary she 
will annually receive still £200,000, & none of the 
money now there or that hereafter may be sent thither 
will be brought hither on account of these taxes, except, 
as I mentioned before, the office expences, which will be 
very trifling. 

When I mention £100,000 as the produce, I take that 
sum only as an instance, but do not pretend to guess that 
it will be near the real one. Yet I believe that we shall 
not receive more from all the taxes, & I do not hear that 
any new taxes are in contemplation. To establish the 
right of Parliament to impose these, & to produce an 
American revenue, is a great & necessary measure. To 
explain & to enforce these laws may be y e business of some 
future sessions, but I do not expect to see more taxes for 
the purposes of revenue, at least for some time. As 
regulations of trade, perhaps, duties may now & then be 
imposed, but those must be small, occasional, & advan- 
tageous to the country that pays them. 

During the last sessions we heard that the fees of the 
Custom House officers in the Colonies were in a very un- 
settled state, the merchants complaining in some places 
of exaction, & in others refusing to pay y e usual fees, 
& y e newly appointed officers frequently denied all fees 
whatsoever ; a temporary provision was made in the 
American act against this evil, but I think it very prob- 
able that more may be done next sessions in order to 
settle the fees upon a certain & permanent foundation. 
If there should, I shall be very glad of all the information 
you can give me on the subject. Perhaps the Com rs of the 
Customs may during the course of the summer make some 
official enquiries of you, but there are many circumstances 
which may be of importance & yet may not come within 
the compass of such an enquiry, & for these I should be 
obliged to you. In what manner do the fees differ in 

1765.] THOMAS WHATELT. 61 

different Colonies, & how have they been settled ? Have 
they been lately alter'd? On what articles are they 
paid ? What are the complaints either of the merchants 
or of the officers, & in what manner do you think they 
can best be adjusted ? If the subject should be brought 
on next sessions I should be glad to be master of it, & I 
hope you will pardon the trouble which my curiosity gives 

As you see so many different people in several provinces 
you can judge better perhaps than any one of their tem- 
per with respect to the new taxes. I hope that now they 
have had time to reflect & oppertunities to examine the 
right of Parliament they do not think of the proceedings 
here in the same light as they were at first represented to 
them. I should be glad to know their present sentiments, 
& on what points they suppose they have reason to com- 
plain. With us there is not a difference of opinion. The 
House of Commons would not receive any petitions, how- 
ever expressed, that implied a doubt of the right of Parlia- 
ment to lay taxes. To receive the petitions would have 
been an acknowledgment that y e right was questionable, 
which we cannot admit. You will see that all our publi- 
cations are on the same side. Have they any effect 
amongst you ? or do your people still dispute the legisla- 
tive authority ? 

I have said nothing to Ingersal of what I have wrote 
to you concerning the Surveyorship of the Woods. I have 
not mention'd it to any body, & you will excuse my de- 
siring you to observe the same caution. I am 
Ever & sincerely yours ; 

T. Whately. 

To John Temple, Esq*. 



London, July 12 th , 1765. 

Sir, — I duly received yours of the 17 th May, and the 
next morning went down to the Custom House to see 
M r Hulton, who had just then received your letters and 
papers, also M r Robinson's relating to the affair at Taun- 
ton, &c, likewise Gov r Bernard's representation of what 
passed between you and him and of his and the Council's 
proceedings on the occasion, which last seems to be drawn 
up with a great deal of acrimony and bitterness, and con- 
tains an accusation against you of having treated the Gov- 
ernor with contempt and indecency ; the whole, however, 
I think amounts to little more than this, — that you told 
the Governor that the proclamation (I think it was) was 
no better than an old tobbacco paper, and that you refused 
to attend when requested by the Governor and Council.* 
I have read over all the letters and papers on both sides 
relating to the affair, and upon the whole it appears plain 
to me that the Governor (considered as an officer of the 
Crown) has been much to blame, and seems to have been 
more solicitous how to save appearances in the exercise 
of his authority than by a proper exertion of it to render 
any effectual service to the Crown. And I dare say it 
will appear so to those who are finally to judge of the 
affair, the nature of which I believe is such that it must 

* Among the Temple Papers is a manuscript volume marked on the cover, "Governor 
Bernard's Conduct Relating to the Riot & Robbery at Taunton, together with the Resolves 
of Council. Copied from the Original Letters and Papers now in the Possession of the 
Surveyor General, 17G5." The dispute with the Governor at this time grew out of an 
attempt of the owner and master of the sloop " Polly " to smuggle a quantity of molasses 
on shore, in April, 1705, in Swanzey River. A narrative of the occurrences having been 
sent to the Surveyor General by the Collector of Newport and the captain of the revenue 
vessel, Mr. Temple applied to Governor Bernard for assistance, who called a Council and 
the next day issued a proclamation, offering a reward for the discovery of the persons en- 
gaged "in these riotous and unlawful proceedings." (See the Boston Evening-Post, 
April 15, 1765.) This delay gave offence to Temple, and a hot dispute occurred between 
him and the Governor, in which the former compared the proclamation and orders sent to 
the County of Bristol to " tobacco paper." Subsequent occurrences added fuel to the fire; 
and a full account of the affair was sent over to England. — Eds. 

1765.] JOSEPH HARRISON". 63 

be laid before the Privy Council ; and if so there is no 
likelyhood of any thing being done about it this long time, 
they having now more important business on their hands. 
For we have had an entire change in the ministry this 
last week. The Marquis of Rockingham is now at the 
head of the Treasury, and the Duke of Grafton and Gen- 
eral Conway Secretary s of State. I shall add at the bot- 
tom a list of such other alterations as have been declared 
at Court. This news, I dare say, will surprize you, as I 
fancy M r Ingersoll would assure you with air of some con- 
fidence that M r Grenville at least was safe, and indeed at 
the time he sailed there seemed to be that appearance, 
but it seems the King's aversion to him and some others 
was insuperable, and they say that all these changes have 
been with M r Pitt's approbation. 

I came to town but 3 days ago, having been down the 
river at Woolwich near 3 weeks on a sailing expedition 
along with S r Geo. Savile, who at present seems to stand 
very high in the opinion of the publick, and is by many 
reckoned one of the first characters in the kingdom. He 
was much solicited to take a share in the present adminis- 
tration, and might have chosen his department ; but as he 
will never enter into any engagements that may [have ?] 
the least tendency to influence the freedom of his vote in 
Parliament, he excused himself from accepting any office 
on acco* of the puny state of his health. However, he 
will have great influence. 

How will this change in the ministry affect Gov r 

B d's interest ? and whether or no will he stand on 

firmer ground than before? M r Mellish is Secretary 
to the Treasury, and I shall take an opportunity of 
relating the whole affair to him, as I have already to S r 
Geo. Savile. A vast many warrants were sent down to 
the Custom House yesterday from the Treasury to fill up 
all the vacant offices, but no notice has yet been taken of 
my memorial about my salary. However, I -now make 


no doubt but it will be settled to satisfaction. But I am 
still at a loss how to proceed for obtaining payment of the 
four years salary now due to me. If you would be so 
kind as to send me a proper certificate by the first oppor- 
tunity of their being 4 years salary due to me last Lady- 
Day, and that I have not received any part of it, I may 
perhaps be able to procure an order for you to grant an 
impress on some other port where there are fines & forfei- 
tures remaining undisposed of. Or if you know of any 
better [way ?] of obtaining it should be glad you would 
inform me of it. M r Powell says the salary should have 
been charged as it became due, in the quarterly accounts., 
I remember I once mentioned that to you, and you said it 
could only be charged properly when an account should be 
rendered of a seizure actually made at New Haven. But 
if you now think it should be charged in the quarterly 
accounts, I shall be much obliged to you if you^ would give 
Col. Whiting proper directions for charging it in the next 
quarter's accounts he sends home. The salary is £50 
ster g $ ann. ; and I was sworn into my office the 28 th 
March, 1761, so reckon it from Lady-Day. If any vacancy 
should happen in your district that may be of more value 
than what I have at New Haven, I shall be greatly obliged 
to you if you would favour me with the earliest intelli- 
gence of it ; for I think as matters are circumstanced I 
may now stand a very good chance for something better 
than what I now have. 

My complim* 8 to your brother, I am 

Yo r most obed. humble serv fc . 

Jos H Harrison. 

P. S. I have this moment heard that your brother is 
to be Surveyor of the Woods in the room of Govern' 
Wentworth. I hope it is so, and shall do all I can to 
promote it. 




List of the New- 
Marquis of Rockingham. 

M r Dowdeswell 

Lord John Cavendish 
Honble. Thomas Townsend 
George Onslow, Esq r 
M r Mellish 
M r Lowndes 
Duke of Grafton 
General Conway 
Earl of Winchilsea 

Duke of Portland 
Lord Villers 
Earl of Scarborough 
Earl of Ashburnham 

Earl of Besborough 
Lord Grantham 
Henry Potts, Secretary 
Sam 1 Potts, Comptroller 


First Lord of the 

Chancellor of the Ex- 

Lords of the Treasury. 

) Secretaries to the 
j Treasury. 

r Secretaries of State. 

President of the Coun- 

Lord Chamberlain. 

Vice Chamberlain. 


Master of the Great 

r Postmasters. 
[ Post Office. 


Parliament Street, 12 th July, [1765] . 

Dear Sir, — I wrote to you some time ago to ask 
whether the office of Surveyor of the Woods would be 
agreable to your brother, but as events have turn'd out 
here, it is now no longer in M r Grenville's power to give 
it to him. I can only assure you that he intended it if 
your brother had liked it, & may probably soon have 
it again in his power to serve him. At present he is a 



private man, being dismiss'd from his Majesty's service, 
& a total change of the Ministry having taken place. The 
Newcastle party are now in office. How long they will 
continue so is another question, & we are not at all dis- 
couraged. I shall hope to hear from you as usual ; but I 
am no longer in office & you will therefore direct to me 
in Parliament Street, where I live & where they will 
always know where to find me. In great haste. 

Yours entirely. T. Whately. 

I have sent to the Custom House the papers I received 
with your favour of 9 th May. It gives me great pleasure 
to hear that the Colonists begin to see the new regulations 
in a proper light. I shall be glad to know from time to 
time how they go on, & by what means their conviction is 
brought about, & what progress they make in it. 

Yours again. T. W. 


(A Copy.) 

London, July 15 th , 1765. 

D R S R , — I wrote you the 12 th ins*, which was for- 
warded by the New York mail last Saturday ; and I now 
write this in hopes to save the pacquet at Falmouth, 
just to let you know that I was this day at the Custom 
House when a letter was received from the Collector and 
Comptroller at New York to inform the Commiss rs that 
you had appointed your brother-in-law M r Fenton a 
Deputy Collector at Albany, and that you had order'd 
M r Moore, the Comptroller, up thither to assist in the 
execution of the office. M r Hulton informs me that the 
Commiss™ express a surprize that you should take this 
step without giving them any notice of your intention or 
writing to them at all about it, nothing from you as yet 


having come to hand on the occasion. I told M r Hulton 
that I would venture to say you had sufficient reason for 
what you had done, and hoped that no judgement would 
be formed about it till your letters came to hand, which 
I made no doubt would clear up the affair to satisfaction. 
However, as I could perceive from what M r Hulton said, 
that the countenance of the Commiss rs was not favourable 
to the appointment, I thought it my duty to give you 
this hint as early as possible that, in case there has been 
a miscarriage of letters, you may lose no time in sending 
over your state of the affair. I am 

Yo r most obed fc humble serv*. 

Jos H Harrison. 

London, Aug* 9 th , 1765. 

D R S R , — On the other side is a copy of what I wrote 
you 3 days after the mail was sent away, in hopes it 
would be in time at Falmouth to go by that pacquet. 
And have now further to add on the same subject, that I 
was yesterday at the Custom House, and no letters from 
you were then come to hand that made any mention of 
the Albany affair, which I am very sorry for, as you 
will by this pacquet receive a letter from the Commiss rs 
wherein they express their disapprobation of the appoint- 
ment ; and with regard to the seizure made by M r Fenton 
their solicitor has given his opinion that even in case of 
a vessel's going from one colony to another without a 
clearance, the goods only, and not the vessel, are liable 
to seizure. This affair makes, a deal of noise at the 
New York Coffee House, and has been inserted in all the 
publick papers as an article of news from Cork in the fol- 
lowing words viz. : " Cork, July 25. John Fenton, Esq r , 
of this city is appointed Collector of his Majesty's duties 
at Albany in North America. I wish with all my soul 
that your account of this matter had got to hand so that 
the Commiss rs at least might have been satisfyd of the 


propriety of this proceeding, as it is grossly misrepre- 
sented and may be made a handle of by M r Bernard's 
friends. Your dispute with that gentlem 11 has lately 
been resumed at the Treasury, from whence sundry papers 
that had been transmitted to the Secretary of State were 
sent to the Commiss 18 of the Customs, with a letter from 
M r Lowndes directing a state of the case to be drawn up 
and reported to their Lordships, which hath accordingly 
been done, and will be presented to-morrow. It consists 
of 6 sheets of paper and is, I think, very impartially exe- 
cuted. It begins with a narrative of Cockle's dismission, 
with extracts from your letters accusing M r Bernard with 
countenancing and abetting him even after full proof of 
his guilt in the affair of the bribe, &c. This, I think, 
judiciously prefaces the account that is afterwards given 
of the transactions relating to the seizure at Swanzey, 
which gave rise to M r Bernard's complaint against you. 
This is stated in a clear light, and the whole concluded in 
the following manner. I cannot recollect the very words, 
but this is the substance, viz*, — " Wee have frequently 
had occasion to bear testimony in favour of the Surveyor 
General as a vigilant, spirited officer. And as the re- 
straints which the policy of the mother country has 
thought proper to lay the colonies under by the Act of 
Navigation and other Laws of Trade renders the people 
there extreamly averse and disaffected to those who have 
the execution of them, wee think that the principal 
officers ought to be supported against all such attacks as 
have a tendency to lessen their influence and importance." 
M r Hulton very readily favoured me w th a perusal of this 
report as soon as it was finished, and at the same time 
desired me (with his compliments) to let you know that 
you would now have heard from him, but that his critical 
scituation respecting this affair would render it improper 
for him to have wrote to you on the subject, as he is ex 
officio supposed to be indifferent to both parties. This 


report, I conclude, will be finally laid before the Council, 
and I think from what appears on the face of things at 
present you need be under no apprehensions but that the 
decision will be in your favour, and in the mean time I 
shall continue to advise you from time to time as any 
thing new occurs on the occasion. 

The Lords of the Treasury have made a return to the 
report of my memorial, and have sent down a warrant 
for putting my salary on the Plantation Establishment, 
with an addition of £10 a year. And I am now going to 
try if I can procure an order for payment of my arrears. 
You will see by the papers what alterations have been 
made in the several ministerial departments since I wrote 
you last. M r York has accepted of the Attorney Gen- 
eral's place ; this seems to look as tho' the present admin- 
istration would stand, tho' some think it will not continue 
long. The papers are full of scurrilities and low invec- 
tive by the scribblers of both parties. But not one well 
wrote pamphlet has yet appeared on either side or I 
would have sent it to you. No alterations have yet 
taken place at the Board of Customs, but 'tis said there 
will be one or two removes there also. 

If any thing may fall vacant within your district that 
is better than New Haven I hope you will be kind enought 
to favour me with the earliest intelligence of it ; for if I 
should fail of getting anything this favourable opper- 
tunity I must never expect to see such another. 

My compliments to yo r brother. I am 

Yo r most obed* humble serv*. 

Jos H Harrison. 


London, October 11 th , 1765. 

D R S R , — I have wrote to you twice since I received 
your last letter, which was dated the 17 th May, and I 


find there has been no despatches from you at the Custom 
House since that time, which they can scarce tell how to 
account for there, especially as they have yet had no 
account from you of that affair relating to the fixing an 
officer at Albany, &c, of which I wrote you largely in 
my last. 

I have lately been several times with the Marquis of 
Rockingham and the Chancellor of the Exchequer (M r 
Dowdeswell) with whom I clined one day last week, and 
staid with him till past nine at night, and as we were 
alone I had a good opportunity of talking over your 
affair with M r Bernard, in which I endeavoured to do 
you that justice which I think you deserve, and I hope I 
may be able to render you some service in that matter. 
However, I find M r Bernard is strongly supported, and 
has several friends at the Board of Trade, to ballance 
which the Board of Customs are entirely on your side. 
And I am sorry there should have been such a long 
interval in your correspondence with them, for fear they 
may take it amiss. 

Wee have lately had strange accounts from Boston of 
the riots and disorders there and at Rhode Island. 
Surely the people are distracted and infatuated. The 
ministry would certainly have relieved them from those 
grievances they have so much complained of had they 
behaved with tollerable decency. But now they must 
expect no favour. What measures will be taken is not 
determined. I shall know when any resolutions are 
formed ; and shall give you the earliest advice. 

I must now give you some account of a late occurrence 
relating to myself. About a fortnight ago the Marquis 
of Rockingham sent for me, and on my waiting on him 
told me that he had long waited for an opportunity to 
serve me, and that he now had something to propose 
which he hoped would be agreeable to me. He then 
told me that M r Hanbury (the great Virginia merchant) 

1765.] THOMAS WHATELY. 71 

had been to inform him that he had received some 
letters from Virginia advising of the death of M r Ran- 
dolph, Surveyor General of the Customs residing there, 
which office his Lordship was pleased to say he had 
reserved for me, tho' no less than three very powerfull 
applications had already been made to him for it. The 
next day I attended at the Treasury where my appoint- 
ment to the office of Surveyor General of his Majesty's 
Customs for the Western Middle District of America 
was entered on the books, and a warrant made out & 
sign'd by the Marquis of Rockingham and all the other 
Lords then present. But that very evening the same 
M r Hanbury received another letter from Virginia dated 
five days after the former to let him know that what had 
been wrote before concerning M r Randolph's death was a 
mistake, he being then in a fair way of recovery. And 
thus ended my Surveyor Generalship. However, to con- 
sole me for the disappointment Lord Rockingham has 
assured me that I may depend on the first good thing 
that becomes vacant. 

My complim ts to your brother & all friends at Boston. 
I am 

Yo r most obliged humble serv. 

Jos H Harrison. 


[October 11, 1765.] 

Dear Sir, — I should be much obliged to you if 
you will be so good as to deliver the enclosed to your 
brother whose particular direction I do not know. I 
have received your favour of 24 th July. I am very sorry 
for the disappointment of the reasonable expectations he 
had that he should be appointed to a place perfectly agre- 
able to him ; but times may mend & let us hope for y e best. 


I have not yet heard y e particulars of the disturbances in 
your Colony,* but our printed accounts make them very 
great, & I am sure a, little reflexion would convince the 
people that there is not the least foundation for their dis- 
content. I do not find that y e tax itself is complain'd of, 
but y e opposition to it arises from a dispute of the right. 
Every principle of our Constitution & the uninterrupted 
practise of our legislature is against them. Our politics 
here are at a stand, nothing particularly doing, but all 
waiting for y e winter. It will give you pleasure to be 
assured that M r Grenville is entirely reconciled to every 
part of his family, & the unhappy breach which their 
party differences made is compleatly heal'd. I have not 
time for more. I am 

Most sincerely yours. T. W. 

Tell me something of Ingersal,t & how his office sits 
upon him. 

Rockingham House, Grosvenor Square, April 15 th , 1766. 

Dear Sir, — The receipt of your obliging letter of 
Jan ry 19 th gives me great pleasure, and is the only one 
that has come to hand since that formerly mentioned, 
dated May 17 th , so that there must have been some very 
extraordinary miscarriage. 

Ever since the beginning of this session of Parliament 
I have liv'd at the Marquis of Rockingham's, where I am 
at present employ'd as an assistant to his private secre- 
tary, M r Burke (author of the book on the Origin of our 
Ideas of the Sublime and Beautifull), and my intimate 
acquaintance with American affairs has at this time en- 
abled me to be particularly usefull, so that I have the 

* The Stamp Act riots in Boston, in August, 1765. — Eds. 
t See note, ante, p. 19. — Eds. 

1766.] JOSEPH HARRISON". 73 

satisfaction of enjoying some share of his Lordship's 
favour and confidence. 

I have taken care on all occasions to do you all the 
good offices in my power with the Marquis of Rocking- 
ham and the Chancellor of the Exchequer, and I may 
venture to assure you that you stand extreamly well with 

them both. Gov r B d's chief friend (Gov r P 1) 

has no influence here, and I am very certain in the dis- 
pute between you and M r B d, the weight of favour 

is in your scale. I am so excessively hurried that I have 
scarce any time to myself, or I should now have wrote 
you a longer letter ; but what I have mentioned above I 
hope will make you easy in that matter, and when I have 
any leisure shall write you again more particularly. 

As it does not seem likely that I shall be permitted to 
return soon to New England, Lord Rockingham has in- 
dulged me with a permission to resign my office at New 
Haven to my brother ; # and a deputation for that purpose 
will be sent over by the New York pacquet. On this oc- 
casion I must beg leave to recommend my brother to your 
favour and notice, being perfectly well assured that you 
will find him not only a very honest but a very accom- 
plished officer, and one that will keep up the dignity of 
his station, and has tallents and abilities that will render 
him very important and popular in that country, par- 
ticularly his knowledge in agriculture, ship-building & 
architecture, with a general acquaintance on all affairs of 
trade & commerce. 

I am just now called away, so that for fear I should be 
detained so long as to lose the oppertunity of this con- 
veyance I must conclude with my compliments to M r 
Inman & your brother. I am, d r S r , 

Yo r most obliged and most humble serv*. 

Jos H Harrison. 

* In a list of the "Establishment of the Northern District, 1 Nov r , 1766," in Temple's 
Letter-Book, Peter Harrison is named as Collector at New Haven. — Eds. 


Rockingham House, Grosvenor Square, 30 th May, 1766. 

Dear Sir, — The last letter I wrote you was dated the 
14 th of last month, which was delivered to the care of one 
M r Green, a passenger in a ship that sailed about that 
time for Boston. 

My present scituation admits of very little leisure, es- 
pecially during the session of Parliament, but I would not 
omit this oppertunity by M r Nevin of letting you hear 
from me, tho' I have little more to say than just to repeat 
that nothing would give me greater pleasure than to have 
it in my power to render you any service. 

Many great and important alterations have been made 
in the Acts of Trade respecting America this present ses- 
sion of Parliament, the particulars of which M r Nevin will 
be able to give you a circumstantial account. The bills 
have passed in the House of Commons, and now lye be- 
fore the Lords, where there is no doubt but they will be 
assented to likewise, as in the last division in that House 
the minority was no more than 16 to 57. 

Some new regulations in the Custom Houses in America 
are intended which I apprehend will be chiefly in the ap- 
pointment of a set of under officers such as landwaiters, 
tidesmen & boatmen in every port, to be on the estab- 
lishment, and appointed by the Treasury with suitable 

1 'm affraid I shall fall under some blame on account 
of M r Hubbard's being appointed to clear out vessels at 
Stamford, which I find the Commissioners know nothing 
of, nor that any such officer is appointed in the port of 
New Haven. This 1 gathered from a private conversa- 
tion with M r Hooper, and it was with some difficulty that 
I avoided any explanation on the subject. However, I 
thought it proper to mention this to you as a hint, which 
you may make a proper use of. 

1766.] THOMAS WHATELY. 75 

M r Hubbard never accounted with me for any part of 
the fees he received for clearing out vessels at Stamford, 
which amounts to a very considerable part of the emolu- 
ments of the collectorship ; in 1763 there were 107 
coasters clear'd out at New Haven, and 64 at Stamford, 
which at 2 dollars each amounts to 128 dollars. As I 
doubt not but you will order M r Hubbard to account to me 
for what fees he has received, I shall rest the settlement 
of that matter entirely with you. And in the mean time 
I would advise that you would recall any powers M r Hub- 
bard may have from you respecting that matter, and leave 
it entirely to the present Collector. As I mentioned be- 
fore, the Commissioners of the Customs know nothing of 
this appointment, and it has lately been intimated to me 
that M r Hale and me will shortly be called upon to give 
an account of all the officers employ'd, their several de- 
partments, and manner of doing business at our respective 

My compliments to your brother & M r Inman. I am, 
d r S r , 

Yo r most obliged & most humble serv*. 

Jos H Harrison. 

The Honble. John Temple, Esq. 


14 th Aug st , 1766. 

Dear Sir, — I have the pleasure of your letter of 1 st 
July, which your brother was so good as to deliver me. 
M r Howard of Rhode Island * did me the favour to intro- 

* Martin Howard. He had made himself obnoxious to the people of Newport, 
R. I., where he lived, by upholding the authority of Parliament over the Colonies. In 
August, 1765, the mob carted through the streets effigies of Augustus Johnston, the stamp- 
master, Howard, and Dr. Thomas Moffatt. " Each of these images had a halter around 
its neck, and all three were carried to the gallows, which had been erected near the town 
house, where they were hung up to view till near night." The next day the mob went to 
Howard's house, "where they destroyed or plundered everything it contained, and de- 


duce him to me soon after his arrival. I have been since 
out of town, & have therefore seen him but once, & that 
for a short time ; but he has promised me his company in 
the country to dinner to-day, & I shall be happy to culti- 
vate my acquaintance with a gentleman whose character 
I have heard so much of from so many quarters. M r 
Grenville is out of town for the summer ; but I shall take 
the first opportunity to introduce your brother to him, & 
I am confident he will be very glad to see his relation. 
At present I can be of no service to him with any Minis- 
ters or any office ; but I took the liberty of hinting to 
him the propriety of observing great moderation with 
respect to Governor Bernard, who is at present so much a 
favourite here for his conduct in the late disturbances 
that no man recommends himself by appearing to be his 
enemy ; & as your connections here are with a family now 
in opposition, I think there is the more occasion for cau- 
tion. I wish for your sake that the animosity between 
you & Governor Bernard w r ere not so great as it is ; & if it 
cannot be reconciled, at least I hope that it will appear 
publickly as little as possible. You will pardon me for 
writing so freely, but I should betray your interests if I 
did not acquaint you with the present situation of affairs 
here so far as I think you concern' d in them. As to our 
political transactions you will have heard before this can 
reach you of a change in the administration, & that the 
late popular M r Pitt is now the most unpopular peer in 
England. The present arrangement is no more formed 
for permanency than the last. Still the abilities of the 
kingdom (unless they can be supposed to center in one 
man) are excluded in a great measure from y e government 

molished the doors, windows, &c, leaving nothing but the bare walls standing." Howard 
and Moffatt then fled to England. Not long afterward Howard was appointed Chief Justice 
of North Carolina. His judicial functions ceased in 1774, but he remained in North Carolina 
some time longer, and then went to Rhode Island, and in 1778 to England, where he died 
in December, 1781. See R. I. Col. Recs., vol. vi. p. 514, note ; Sabine's American Loyal- 
ists, vol. i. pp. 546, 547. — Eds. 

1766.] THOMAS WHATELY. 77 

of it ; & that is not a state of things which can continue. 
Your relations have nothing to say to it, & I think so 
highly of them that I believe their services necessary to 
the publick, & I hope the publick will soon avail itself of 
them. You decline entering into the subject of the late 
disturbances in America, & I am not disposed to dwell 
upon them. They are, as I understand, quieted for the 
present. I was not one of those who thought the repeal 
of the Stamp Act the proper way to quell them ; nor have 
I approved of any of the measures of y e Ministry during 
the last year with respect to the Colonies. My opinions 
on those points were settled long ago, & I have not yet 
learn'd the trick of the times in changing opinions. I re- 
member you once mention'd to me a pamphlet call'd The 
Regulations lately made in y e Colonies & the Taxes imposed 
upon them Consider d. I was guilty of writing that same 
pamphlet, & you see I abide by my principles by my ac- 
knowledging that work which I never own'd till lately. 
I have been very happy this winter in the acquaintance 
of M r Howard, another wicked author, whom I am sorry 
to lose so soon ; but he is setting out for North Carolina, 
where he is appointed Chief Justice, which appointment I 
look upon as the best & last act of the late administra- 
tion. D r Moffatt, too, his fellow sufferer, has got an office 
in Connecticut.* He is so good as to undertake to convey 
this to you. If I have time, I shall wish to write by the 
same conveyance to Ingersoll, who, I hear, has suffer'd 
very much & very undeservedly ; but I can send him only 
condolencies, & they are hardly worth the carriage. I 
shall go down to M r Grenville in a few days, & will men- 
tion to him what you desire. I shall be glad to hear from 

* Dr. Thomas Moffatt was a Scotch physician, who came to America about 1746, and 
settled in Rhode Island. Having incurred the iil-vvill of his fellow-townsmen and suffered 
heavy pecuniary losses, he fled to England in 1765. He was rewarded by the appointment 
of Comptroller of the Customs at New London, Conn. On the breaking out of the war, he 
again went to England in a British man-of-war. See Sabine's American Loyalists, vol. ii. 
p. 85. — Eds. 


you whenever you have proper opportunities ; but I know 
y e difficulties you have all been under, & I have abstain'd 
from writing to my friends in America for fear of involv- 
ing them ; but I suppose the correspondence is more open 
than it was, & that for the future I may hope to have 
now & then a letter, in which, if it is safe to write it, I 
shall be glad to read any account of y e situation of affairs 
in your distant part of the world. I am, with great 

Your most obed fc & faithful serv*. 

Thomas Whately. 

Nonsuch Park, 14 th Aug st , 1766. 


Dear Sir, — Your brother has given me leave to trouble 
you with the enclosed letter to our old acquaintance M r 
Ingersol, which I should be much obliged to you if you 
could find means to convey to him by a private hand ; 
& I beg this favour of you also to send the other letter 
which I have taken the liberty to put under your cover 
for M r Oliver. Your brother answers for your forgiving 
me for thus trespassing on your goodness, & he has 
taught me to believe implicitly whatever he says. He is, 
indeed, a most respectable man, & I am much obliged 
to you for giving me so valuable an accession to the 
number of my American friends. We are near neighbours, 
living in the same street, & very often see one another. 
He likes us very well, but I do not believe he will be very 
sorry to return to his home & his family. As you have 
so good a correspondent here it will not only be needless, 
but almost impertinent, in me to write you the news of 
the place. I dare to say he gives it you very faith- 
fully ; but as he may not yet have learn'd how little our 
current reports are to be depended on, & may have there- 

1767.] THOMAS WHATELY. 79 

fore given credit to some which I, who am more used 
to them, do not build my faith upon, I will with his leave 
endeavour to prevent any mistakes, & confine myself to 
tell you what is not, tho' you may hear that it is, true. 
I have found several of your Americans alarmed with 
a notion that fifteen regiments are directly going from 
hence to take possession of the great towns. The fact is 
that five regiments will be sent to relieve five now in y e 
Colonies, who are to be brought home, according to the 
settled rotation which has been observed ever since the 
last peace, except in the last year, which omission makes 
it the more necessary now. Another idea is, that a Board 
of Customs is to be establish'd in America ; & if there 
were I should sincerely wish that you were one of the 
Commissioners, as it is said you would be • but I do not 
hear of any step taken towards such an establishment. 
Taxes too are talk'd of in America, but I do not find any 
thing of that kind in any forwardness, except perhaps 
an alteration in the tea duty, which, it is said, will be 
lower' d & collected in a different manner, in order to 
put a total stop to smuggling in that commodity. The 
stability of the present Ministry is also asserted as confi- 
dently as the immediate dissolution of it. Neither is true. 
That things cannot continue in their present state is 
apparent. Lord Chatham, the Prime Minister, has been 
out of town these three months. He is extreamly 
unpopular, & the other Ministers are many of them 
much disgusted at him & divided among themselves ; 
but what, when, or how y e change will be nobody can 
say. Am I not an ill-natured politician who leave you 
nothing for speculation ? I will therefore give you one 
fact which you may depend upon entirely. That the 
tide is entirely turn'd here with respect to America, that 
the distinction between external & internal taxes is totally 
exploded, that every doubt upon the right is ridiculed & 
censured whenever it is mention'd, & that the re-estab- 


lishment of the civil authority which has been of late 
much weakened in the Colonies is now y e prevailing 
object amongst men of all denominations. This you may 
depend upon is the general disposition of people here, & I 
dare say you will soon find all accounts from hence agree 
with mine. M r Howard of Rhode Island has written to me 
from South Carolina, & desired me to send my answer by 
your brother, to meet him in the spring at Boston. As I 
hope & believe he will not leave us so soon, I shall take 
the liberty to trouble you with a letter for M r Howard, 
& will be obliged to you if he arrives before my letter, 
that you will tell him my intentions. Adieu, my dear 
Sir, & believe me 

Ever & truly yours; T. Whately. 

London, 25 th Feb'?, 1767. 
John Temple, Esq. 


London, 2 d May, 1767. 

Dear Sir, — I again trouble you by your brother's 
permission with a packet of letters which I am ashamed 
to send you ; but he encourages me to go on, & I 
shall under such encouragement be tempted now & 
then to take the same liberty until you forbid me. 
This time, indeed, I am under a kind of necessity to 
enclose my letters to you, as I really do not know how 
to direct to M r Howard, not even to what province, 
as he proposed to be somewhere in your neighbour- 
hood during part of the summer, but I am not sure 
whether he carries his intention into execution, & of 
D r Moffatt I only know that he is in the Colony of 
Connecticut, but in what town he resides I cannot re- 
member. You will be able to find them both, & I should 

1767.] THOMAS WHATELY. 81 

be much obliged to you if you will convey my letters to 
them & to M r Ingersol by 'private hands, when you have 
opportunities. I am happy at the same time to accom- 
pany this trouble with my sincere congratulations on the 
alliance you have lately made, & which I find to be per- 
fectly agreable to your family thro' all its branches here.* 
I shall soon too, I hope, have it my power to follow these 
w T ith other compliments upon your appointment to an 
office, of which in my last, of 24 th Feb ry , I doubted 
whether the establishment would this year take place; 
but I understand now that a Board of Customs will be 
fix'd at Boston, to consist of five Commissioners, two of 
whom are to be the Surveyors General for the northern 
districts. I hope the situation will be more agreable to 
you than your present employment, but in either you 
will have much to do, as the measure of taxing America 
is now so generally & so strongly supported here, & the 
one fund which the Stamp Act was intended to create 
being destroy'd, it must be supplied by a multiplicity of 
others, most of which will be impost duties. Many are 
at present under consideration, such as duties upon wine, 
oil, fruit, raisins & currants, allowing the carriage of them 
at the same time to be direct from the places of their 
growth to America. A salt tax is also talk'd of, with 
a drawback upon such as shall be used in the fisheries. 
A tonnage upon shipping is another ; but all of these, 
I suppose, will not take place at once, & which of them 
will be laid this year is not yet absolutely settled, but 
will be in a very few days, when the plan of administration 
for y e Colonies will be laid before Parliament. Nothing 
has yet been done in either House ; but in the House of 
Lords a motion was made for an address to submit to his 
Majesty's consideration the proper proceeding to be held 
in regard to the Act of Indemnity annexed to the Act of 

* John Temple was married to Elizabeth, only daughter of James Bowdoin, afterward 
Governor of Massachusetts, in Boston, Jan. 20, 1767. — Eds. 



Compensation by the Assembly of Massachusets Bay.* 
I can hardly say who spoke of it with the most indigna- 
tion, & none attempted to vindicate it ; but the Ministers 
opposed y e mode of taking notice of it in an address, be- 
cause they said that it seem'd to reflect a suspicion on 
the King's servants, as if they could be wanting in their 
duty, which they understood to be to advise the Crown to 
disallow it. The answer to this objection was that the 
inexpediency of an Act of Assembly was alone a sufficient 
reason for disallowing it, but the illegality of this act 
required more than a meer reversal. That it was an 
encroachment on the prerogative, an infringement of 
the Constitution, an usurpation of powers which neither 
House of Parliament pretended to exercise, for that the 
power of pardon was vested solely in the Crown ; the 
Lords nor the Commons never attempted to indemnify 
without the concurrence of the Crown, & that concur- 
rence could not be had to this Act of Assembly, for the 
Governor was only a corporation magistrate, & not the 
King's representative in the Province of Massachusets 
Bay. That in Virginia, after Bacon's Rebellion, the 
Assembly there having passed such an Act of Indemnity, 
the Privy Council declared it null, & in the stead of it 
sent over an act ready drawn up, & under the Great Seal, 
with orders to the Assembly to pass it, & it is now in their 
Statute Book. That this should be treated in the same 

* By an act of the General Court, passed Dec. 6, 17G6, certain sums were granted to 
Thomas Hutchinson, Andrew Oliver, and others, to be paid out of the public treasury, in 
full compensation for their losses and sufferings during the Stamp Act riots; and by the 
second section of the same act it was provided that "all riots, routs and unlawful assemblies " 
within this Province, between Aug. 1, 1765, and May 1, 1766, "and all burglaries, felonies, 
rescues, and breaches of the peace whatsoever ... be and hereby are pardoned, released, 
indemnified, discharged, and put in utter oblivion; and that all and every the person or 
persons acting, advising, assisting, abetting, and councelling the same, be and are hereby 
pardoned, released, acquitted, indemnified and discharged from the same, and of and 
from all pains of death and other pains, judgments, indictments, convictions, penalties and 
forfeitures therefor had or given, or that might accrue, for the same; and that such indict- 
ments, convictions and forfeitures are hereby declared null and void." In May, 1767, in 
conformity with an adverse opinion of the law officers of the Crown and n report from the 
Board of Trade, the act was disallowed. See Province Laws, vol. iv. pp. 903, 904, and the 
editor's note, pp. 931-945. — Eds. 

1767.] THOMAS WHATELY. 83 

manner, & the rather because a meer reversal would 
answer no purpose whatsoever ; for that a criminal once 
pardon'd is pardon'd for ever. The grace cannot be re- 
called if it has ever been granted, & that therefore if this 
Act of Indemnity should be admitted to have existed a 
moment as a legal act, all the purposes intended by it 
would be obtain'd, & all the operations design'd by the 
reversal would be defeated. The previous question was 
carried for the reasons I have given ; but as the princi- 
ples held by those who were for y e motion were not con- 
troverted, I make no doubt that the measure suggested by 
them of declaring y e act null & void db initio will be adopted. 
In the course of this & other debates many reflections 
were drop'd upon past transactions & upon the present 
state of affairs in America. The distinction between 
internal and external taxes frequently occurs, not now 
as a subject of debate, but a matter of reproach to those 
who maintain d last year that Parliament had not a right 
to lay the former as well as the latter. I told you in my 
last that that doctrine was then always call'd nonsensical. 
It has been since said to be criminal and treasonable, & 
they who defended it then disclaim it now, by alledging 
that the Declaratory Act has put an end to the question, 
& determin'd the law. 

I overpower you with politicks : if I do, you must blame 
your American brethren here who assure me that no subject 
from hence can be more interesting, & to you who are in a 
publick office it is indeed to a degree a personal concern. 
Your brother is almost my next door neighbour, & a very 
good one. He makes, however, frequent excursions into 
the country, which has more charms to him than London, 
& has lately been to Newmarket races, where I thought 
his love & knowledge of horses would have found amuse- 
ment, but his honest soul was so shocked at the scene of 
gaming & profligacy he saw there that he is return'd 
determin'd to oppose every attempt that shall ever be 


made to introduce regular horse-races at Boston. You will 
be so kind as to present my compliments to M r Oliver 
& my other friends on your side the great lake, & to 
believe me 

Ever vours. Thomas Whately. 

A paper currency under government security is amongst 
other things now under consideration. 

The Hon blb John Temple, Esq. 


Boston, Dec r 13, 1767. 

S E , — I had your obliging favor of the 3 d of Aug*, with 
invoice of a carpet and fan, w ch are rec d , am to £12.17 
for which I shall credit Mess" Lane, Son & Fraser's ac- 
count. I observe there are now publishing by M r Boydell 
engravings done from the most capital paintings in Eng- 
land, & you are kind eno to invite me as a brother mem- 
ber of the Society for encouraging Arts, &c, to become a 
subscriber ; but you have doubtless been informed of the 
plans of ceconomy w ch have lately taken place here in 
consequence of proceedings on y r side the water. These 
proceedings, w ch in the idea of Americans & of some 
respectable persons with you are utterly inconsistent 
with the rights of Englishmen & freemen, must eventually, 
if persisted in, terminate in y e distress of both countries, 
at least in the great detriment of both. This is foreseen & 
in some degree already felt w th respect to America, & has 
necessitated the slaves of it (for to slavery we think our- 
selves now damned) to adopt oeconomical plans, & every 
measure that can tend to make such a state in any degree 
tolerable. You will clearty see therefore the spirit of 
ceconomy, so necessarily prevalent here, will not allow 

* A London merchant and business correspondent of Mr. Bowdoin. — Eds. 


our importing such kind of articles ; but this does not 
hinder my expressing the obligations I am under to you 
for your very kind information & the readiness you so 
obligingly manifest to supply me with those or any other 
articles. Your mentioning the society reminds me that I 
have not rec d for some time past any of the books they 
annually publish & distribute among the members. Some 
of y r friends here, particularly M rs Bowdoin, M r & M rs 
Temple, send their respectful compliments to you & y r 
lady, & would be glad to have the pleasure of seeing 
you here again & accompanied by her. In this pleasure 
I should largely share. Pray when are we to expect it ? 
I am respectfully, 

Yrs, &c. 


Gentlemen of the Council and Gentlemen of the House of 

I hereby communicate to you an extract of a letter 
from the Earl of Hillsborough, his Majesty's Secretary of 
State for America, and copies of a report of the Lords 
Commissioners for Trade & Plantations concerning the 
constitution of an Agent for this Province. I shall be 
ready to join with you in the appointment of an Agent, 
either general or special as shall be thought most expe- 
dient. I shall propose no one to you myself, but shall 
judge freely and impartially of those who shall be sub- 
mitted to me for my consent. 

Fra. Bernard. 

Council Chamber, May 31, 1768. 

Extract of a Letter from the B? Hono ble the Earl of Hillsborough* 
one of his Majesty's principal Secretaries of State, to his 
Excellency Governor Bernard, dated Whitehall, Feb y 16, 

Sir, — Since my appointment to my office the Lords of 
Trade have transmitted to me their representation to his 


Majesty upon those parts of your letters to Lord Shel- 
burne N° 11 & 17 which relate to the claim of the House 
of Representatives to appoint an Agent for the affairs of 
the Province independent of the Governor and Council. 

I have had the honour to lay this representation before 
the King, who has commanded me to transmit to you 
the inclosed copy of it, not doubting that the House of 
Representatives will be induced from a consideration of 
the propriety of what is set forth in it, to recede from a 
claim that appears to his Majesty to be neither supported 
by reason nor justified by precedent, and to adopt that 
mode of appointment of an Agent which has been 
adjudged upon the fullest examination to be the most 
regular & constitutional in all cases, and seems in a 
more particular manner to correspond with the principles 
of the Charter on which the government of the Colony of 
Massachusetts Bay is founded. 

I am, with great truth and regard, 

Sir, Your most obed* hum le servant. 


Governor of Massachusetts Bay. 


Whitehall, Feb? 4, 1768. 

My Lord, — In obedience to his Majesty's commands 
signified to us by the Earl of Shelburne, in his Lordship's 
letter of the 7 th of December last, that we should report 
our opinion whether the House of Representatives of 
Massachusetts Bay have a right to chuse an Agent for 
themselves, and whether such Agent should be received 
in a public capacity or not, and what the usual practice 
of government has been in similar cases, we have pre- 
pared and herewith transmit to your Lordship our humble 
representation thereupon. 

We are, &c. Clare. 

Soame Jenyns. 
J. Dyson. 

Earl of Hillsborough. 


To the King's most excellent Majesty: 

May it please your Majesty, — In obedience to your 
Majesty's commands signified to us by the Earl of Shel- 
burne, one of your Majesty's principal Secretaries of 
State, in his letter of the 7 th of Jan y , 1768, we have 
taken into our consideration the following questions 
therein referred, viz* : " Whether the House of Repre- 
sentatives of Massachusetts Bay have a right to chuse an 
Agent for themselves, and whether such Agent shou'd be 
received in a public capacity or not, and what the usual 
practice of government has been in similar cases." In 
answer whereunto we humbly beg leave to represent to 
your Majesty, 

That we are of opinion that the House of Representa- 
tives of Massachusetts Bay have not in themselves any 
right or priviledge, such as they have assumed, of appoint- 
ing an agent or representative residing in this kingdom 
to transact here the public affairs of that Province, con- 
stituted by their sole authority and retain' d in their 
separate service and pay ; and this, as we conceive, has 
ever been the opinion of the servants of the Crown in all 
precedents where claims of the like nature have been set 
up by this branch of the Legislature, to the exclusion of 
the Gov r and Council. In particular, we find that in 
the year 1709 upon an Act being passed in Barbadoes 
for appointing agents to transact the public affairs of that 
island, by which act the Gov r and Council were excluded 
from any share in the nomination of these officers, the 
matter in question came to be solemnly discussed, and 
the Lords Commissioners for Trade and Plantations then 
in office, in reporting for the repeal of this law, did in 
the fullest and clearest manner state their opinion in an 
humble representation to the Crown, " That this pre- 
tended right of the Assembly of Barbadoes, exclusive of 


the Gov r and Council there, of appointing persons under 
the public character of agents for negociating in this 
kingdom the public affairs of that island was no way 
founded upon good reason, nor warranted by the like 
usage in any other Plantation under his Majesty's imme- 
diate governing but was inconsistent with the nature and 
form thereof, & might tend to create jealousies and divi- 
sions in the several parts of that Legislature, to the mani- 
fest disquiet of his Majesty's subjects there, and to the 
prejudice of that trade." 

These remarks, both with respect to the invalidity of 
such pretensions and the prejudices that might result 
from the allowance of them, with many other arguments 
and observations contained in that paper, apply them- 
selves so directly to the case in question that we shall 
humbly beg leave to annex hereunto a copy of that 

If for these reasons it shall appear to your Majesty 
that the House of Representatives are not warranted in 
the right they have assumed, we conceive that little 
doubt can occur upon the policy of tolerating them in 
such assumption. The intelligence contained in the 
extracts from Gov r Bernard's letter to the # Earl of Shel- 
burne communicated to us by his Lordship further 
inclines us to apprehend that the receiving an agent so 
partially constituted, in the various offices and depart- 
ments of governm* in a public capacity, will most probably 
be attended with inconvenience and embarrassment ; and 
therefore tho' cases may have occur'd wherein governm 4 
either thro 1 inadvertence or from various other causes 
may have admitted persons under the separate appoint- 
ment of a Provincial Assembly to solicit the affairs of 
such respective Province in the capacity of agents, yet as 
the few precedents of this nature which either accident or 
inattention have let pass cannot be construed to establish 
a right, we think that your Majesty's ministers may in 


all cases where they apprehend any inconveniences from 
the reception of such an agent persist in an exclusion of 
him, consistently with reason & justice, and without any 
infraction of the rights and priviledges of the Assembly 
who are his constituents. 

All which is most humbly submitted. 

Soame Jenyns. 


Tho s Robinson. 

Whitehall, Feb. 4, 1768. 

To the Queen's most excellent Majesty. 

May it please your Majesty, — Having received an 
Act passed in Barbadoes the 16 th of May, 1709, intituled 
" An Act appointing agents to transact the public affairs 
of this island," we have considered the same, and there- 
upon humbly take leave to represent to your Majesty. 

That we find since the year 1660 there have been fre- 
quent disputes between the Council and Assembly of 
Barbadoes about the nominating and appointing agents 
residing within this kingdom to transact here the public 
affairs of that island, the Assembly having claim'd a 
right of such nomination and appointment exclusive of 
the Governor and Council ; and they having for the most 
part done the same by a clause in the Excise Bill, refus- 
ing to grant the duty arising thereby, unless they named 
the said agents in the Bill, to which the Council were 
some time necessitated for the sake of the said duty to 
consent ; by this means (the Excise Bill being made for 
one year only) the Assembly annually nominated the 
agents notwithstanding the opposition made thereunto 
by the Council ; but we do not find that any of these 
laws by which agents have been constituted have at any 
time been confirmed by your Majesty or any of your royal 


In the year 1697, when the Assembly insisted upon 
their pretended rights, the then President in Council 
disallowed thereof for the reasons mentioned in the 
annexed paper marked A. 

But not to go too far back we shall only humbly lay 
before your Majesty what has passed relating to the 
appointment of agents since M r Crow's arrival here. 

The Assembly in March 1707/8 sent up to the Council 
a new Excise Bill with the usual clause for the agents 
in it ; the Council upon consideration thereof gave their 
reasons for not allowing the said clause ; this occasioned 
several messages and conferences between the Council & 
Assembly and upon the Council's insisting to have the 
said clause omitted, the Assembly on the 19 th of March 
1707/8, in consideration of the great want of money there 
was at that time, passed the Excise Bill without the said 
clause, but made the following resolves. 

" Resolved, that from the first constitution and appoint- 
ing of agents in England for the public service of this 
island, the right of appointing such agents was and is in 
the representative body of this island. 

" Resolved, that the members of her Majesty's Council 
of this island by setting up a right with this House to 
nominate and appoint such agents have endeavoured to 
invade the right which is solely fixed in this House." 

In December, 1708, the first abovementioned act for ap- 
pointing agents (which is founded on the foresaid resolves, 
the preamble setting forth the necessity of the inhabitants 
having: agents here to solicit for them, and the next clause 
desiring the Governor and Council to ratify the Assem- 
bly's nomination & appointment of their agents) was 
brought into the Assembly where it lay till May, and 
was then passed by them, and sent up to the Council ; 
but whether the Council made then any objections to this 
act, or no, does not appear to us, their minutes for that 
time not having- been transmitted, however, as this act 


excludes the Governor and Council from nominating and 
appointing agents, we humbly conceive that M r Crow has 
not done his duty in passing the same. 

But that your Majesty may have a clearer view of the 
pretensions of the Assembly we further take leave to 
represent to your Majesty, that in Novem r , 1708, the 
persons named in the first abovementioned act for agents 
delivered to us as a paper, intituled some positions laid 
down, that the General Assembly exclusive of the Gov- 
ernor & Council may appoint agents to negociate the public 
affairs of this island in England, which paper containing 
some positions of a very extraordinary & dangerous con- 
sequence we take leave to annex a copy thereof marked 
B., and upon it to make the following observations. 

We do agree that it is the undoubted right of the sub- 
ject, either in his private capacity or as a body politick 
to apply to your Majesty by petition, complaint or other 
address so it be done in such manner as the law directs, 
yet we can by no means admit it to be a necessary conse- 
quence that therefore the General Assembly of Barbadoes, 
exclusive of the Gov r & Council there, have a right to 
appoint persons under a public character of agents for 
negociating in this kingdom the public affairs of that 
island by way of application to your Majesty ; such a 
pretended right is no ways founded upon good reason, 
nor warranted by the like usage in any other Plantation 
under your Maty's immediate gover', but is inconsistent 
with the nature and form thereof, and may tend to create 
jealousies and divisions in the several parts of that Legis- 
lature to the manifest disquiet of your Majesty's subjects 
there, and to the prejudice of that trade. 

If such exclusive power of appointing public agents be 
allowed to the General Assembly, with as much reason 
may the Gov r & Council severally claim a like power, 
exclusive one of the other, to appoint their respective 
agents. For if the Gen 1 Assembly cannot (as they sug- 


gest) rely upon the service of any other agents than such 
as are solely chosen by and intirely dependant on them, 
what use can the Gov r or Council expect to have of 
agents so chosen, who are intirely independant of the 
Gov r & Council? 

What mischief and confusion in business such distinct 
agencies may occasion by their interfering and clashing 
one with another, according to the several instructions 
they may receive from their respective principals, is so 
obvious we shall not trouble your Majesty therewith. 

Among the several reasons given for allowing an ex- 
clusive right in the General Assembly, some of them are 
very extraordinary, they being founded upon unjust 
suppositions ; that the Gov r and Council will refuse or 
neglect to employ their best offices for procuring from 
your Majesty a concession of whatever may reasonably 
be desired for the ease, safety, or benefit of the island ; 
and that they will in all matters be inclined to support 
and maintain the prerogative without having a due regard 
to the rights and privileges of the subject. 

This is to suppose, not only that so many of the prin- 
cipal inhabitants as constitute the Council have no share 
in or concern for the good of their country, but that both 
Gov r and Council will act contrary to the express trust 
reposed in them ; and we look upon any insinuation as 
tho' the interest of the Crown were separate from that of 
the subject to be false and of dangerous consequence. 

Wherefore we are humbly of opinion that the Gen 1 
Assembly of Barbadoes exclusive of the Gov r and Council 
have not any right, nor ought to be allowed, to appoint 
persons under the character of public agents for negociat- 
ing in this kingdom the public affairs of that island ; nor 
do we see wherein such appointment of agents by the 
Assembly can answer the end they propose, since they 
cannot reasonably expect that your Majesty will come to 
any resolution upon the application of such agents in pub- 


lie matters, without referring the same to the Gov r , or to 
him & the Council there for their opinion therein ; and 
therefore we humbly offer that your Majesty be pleased 
to signify your disallowance & disapprobation of the said 
act for appointing agents, but in case your Majesty shall 
think fit that agents may be nominated and appointed by 
the joint consent of the Gov r , Council, and Assembly to 
negociate here the public affairs of that island, as is prac- 
ticed in Jamaica and some other of the plantations, we 
have no objection to it. 

All which is most humbly submitted. 



Jn° Smith. 

Phil. Meadows. 

J. Pultney. 


Whitehall, Nov r 9 th , 1709. 

To the King's most excellent Majesty. 

The humble petition of the Council of the Province of 
Massachusetts Bay. 

We, your Majesty's most dutiful and loyal subjects, the 
Council of the Province of the Massachusetts Bay, deeply 
impressed with a sense of your paternal affection for all 
your subjects even the most remote of them, and your 
disposition to hearken to their addresses with an attention 
suited to the nature of them, humbly beg leave in behalf 
of your faithful subjects of said Province to represent to 
your Majesty ; 

That the first setlers of New England, more attentive 
to religion than worldly emolument, planted themselves 
in this country with a view of being secure from religious 


imposition, and not with any expectations of advancing 
their temporal interests which the nature of the soil 
forbad them to indulge. 

That they obtained a patent of this country from King 
Charles the First, which though vacated in the unhappy 
times of James the Second, revived in the present Charter 
of the Province, which was granted in the succeeding 
glorious reign of King William and Queen Mary, who by 
said Charter confirmed to their subjects in this Province 
divers important rights and privileges, which have been 
enjoyed to the present time. 

That from the length and severity of the winters, the 
inferiority of the soil, and the great labour necessary to 
subdue it they underwent incredible hardships. 

That besides the climate and soil they had to contend 
with a numerous and barbarous enemy, which made fre- 
quent inroads upon them, broke up their exterior settle- 
ments, and several times had nearly accomplished their 
utter destruction, by which means they were kept in 
perpetual alarms, and their country made the scene of 
rapine and slaughter. 

That nothing but the most invincible fortitude, ani- 
mated by the principles of religion, could have enabled 
them to sustain the hardships and distresses that came 
upon them by these causes ; nothing less could have 
induced them to persevere in the settlement of a country, 
from which in its best estate they had only to expect a 
comfortable subsistence, and that in consequence of their 
unremitted labour. 

That by this labour, these hardships and distresses, 
they dearly purchased the rights and privileges and the 
country granted to them by Charter, and which thev have 
transmitted to their children and successors, the present 
inhabitants, your Majesty's faithful subjects of this 

That the present inhabitants, though more happily 


circumstanced than their ancestors, and though some 
among them, especially in the trading towns, live in 
affluence, yet from the operation of the same causes (the 
length and severity of the winters and the stubborness 
and infertility of the soil) are now able with all their 
labour to obtain but a comfortable support for themselves 
and families, and many of them a very slender one ; 
their cloathing, of which in this cold climate a great deal 
is necessary, and which, except some small part of it 
which they make themselves, is wholly made of the 
woolens and other manufactures of Great Britain ; the 
other necessary articles of subsistence and the yearly 
taxes upon their polls and on their real and personal 
estates taking up the whole, or nearly the whole, produce 
of their lands. 

That by their means your Majesty's dominions have 
been enlarged, your subjects increased, and the trade of 
Great Britain extended, all in degree envied by her 
enemies, and unexpected by her warmest friends ; and 
all without any expence to her till the late war. 

That in the late war, without recurring to the former 
expeditions against Canada, to the reduction of Nova 
Scotia in seventeen hundred and ten, to the preservation 
of it several times since, to the conquest of Louisbourg 
with its dependent territories in seventeen hundred and 
forty-five, the reddition of which was esteemed by France 
an ample equivalent for all her conquests during, on her 
part, a successful war, and gave peace to Europe, — 
upon your Majesty's requisitions and the requisitions of 
your royal grandfather this Province in the last war 
yearly raised a large body of troops to assist in conjunc- 
tion with other Colony troops in reducing the French 
power in America, the expence of which was very great, 
and would have been insupportable if part of it had not 
been refunded by Parliament from a conviction of our 
inability to bear the whole. 


That the loss of men in the several campains of that 
war was great, and which to a young country must be 
very detrimental, and could not be retaliated by grants 
of Parliament, and to which those grants had no respect. 

That the acquisition of so large a part of America by 
your Majesty's arms, though a great national good, and 
greatly beneficial to the Colonies by freeing them from 
the hostilities of the French, and (in a good measure) of 
the Indians that were under their influence, has in several 
respects operated to the detriment of the Colonies ; par- 
ticularly in diminishing the value of real estates, and 
drawing our people from us to settle the new acquired 

That said acquisitions have occasioned new and in- 
creasing demands for the manufactures of Great Britain, 
and have opened to her sources of trade greatly beneficial 
and continually enlarging, the benefits of which center 
in herself, and which with the extensive territories ac- 
quired are apprehended to be an ample equivalent for 
all the charges of the war in America, and for the 
expences of defending, protecting, and securing said 

That this Province in particular is still in debt on ac- 
count of the charge incurred by the late war. 

That the yearly taxes — excepting the present year, 
on which no public tax has been yet laid by reason of a 
general valuation of estates through the Province, which 
could not be compleated before the dissolution of the 
late General Assembly, but which will probably be re- 
sumed when a new Assembly shall be called — that the 
yearly taxes upon the people for lessening the said debt, 
tho not so great as during the war, are nevertheless with 
more difficulty paid by reason of the greater scarcity of 

That the scarcity of money in the Colonies is owing to 
the ballance of their trade with Great Britain being 


against them, which ballance without the operation of 
the several acts of Parliament taxing the Colonies by 
laying certain duties for the purpose of drawing a revenue 
from them drains them of their money, so as that their 
trade, which is the only source of their money, is greatly 

That the embarrassment is much increased by the late 
regulations of trade, and by the tax acts aforesaid, which 
draw immediately from trade the money necessary to 
support it, on the support of which the payment of the 
ballance aforesaid depends. 

That the said tax acts operating to the detriment of 
the trade of the Colonies must operate to the detri- 
ment of Great Britain by disabling them from paying 
the debt due to her, and by laying them under a necessity 
of using less of her manufactures. 

That by using the manufactures of Great Britain which 
are virtually charged with most of the taxes that take 
place there, the Colonies pay a considerable part of those 

That by several acts of Parliament the Colonies are 
restrained from importing most of the commodities of 
Europe, except from Great Britain, which occasions her 
manufactures and all commodities coming from her to be 
dearer charged, and is therefore equivalent to a tax upon 

That the Colonies are prohibited from sending to 
foreign markets many valuable articles of their produce, 
which giving to Great Britain an advantage in the price 
of them is a proportionable and a further tax upon the 

That the exports of the Colonies, all their gold and sil- 
ver, and their whole powers of remittance fall short of the 
charged value of what they import from Great Britain. 

That in evidence of this we humbly apprehend the 
merchants of Great Britain trading to the Colonies, but 



especially such as send goods to them on factorage, can 
declare their judgment, who from the difficulty of obtain- 
ing remittances, from the bad debts made, and from the 
rate of exchange, which is generally above par, can form 
a very good one. 

That if it be considered what difficulties the Colonies 
encountered on their first settlement ; their having de- 
fended themselves (Nova Scotia & Georgia excepted) 
without any expence to Great Britain ; the assistance 
given by them in the late war whereby the empire of 
Great Britain is so greatly extended, and its trade pro- 
portionably increased ; the diminution of the value of 
their estates, and the emigration of their inhabitants 
occasioned by that extension ; the loss of men in said 
war, peculiarly detrimental to young countries ; the taxes 
on them to support their own internal government ; the 
share they pay of the duties and taxes in Britain by the 
consumption of British manufactures, for which such 
valuable returns are made ; the restraints upon their 
trade, equivalent to a tax ; the balance of trade con- 
tinually against them, and their consequent inability to 
pay the duties laid by the acts aforesaid : If these facts 
be considered, we humbly conceive it must appear that 
your Majesty's subjects in the Colonies have been and 
are as much burthened as those in Great Britain, and 
that they are, whilst in America, more advantagious to 
Britain than if they were transplanted thither, and sub- 
jected to all the duties and taxes paid there. 

With great humility we beg leave to lay this represen- 
tation at your Majesty's feet, humbly praying your 
Majesty's favorable consideration of it, and that the 
Charter rights and privileges of the people of this Prov- 
ince may be secured to them. And if it should appear 
to your Majesty that it is not for the benefit of Great 
Britain and her Colonies (over which your paternal care 
is conspicuous) that any revenue should be drawn from 


the Colonies, we humbly implore your Majesty's gracious 
recommendation to Parliament that your American sub- 
jects may be relieved from the operation of the several acts 
made for that purpose, in such manner as to the wisdom 
of your Majesty and Parliament may seem proper. 

At a Council held at the Council Chamber in Boston, 
on Thursday, July 7, 1768. 

Present in Council. 
His Excellency Francis Bernard, Esq., Governor. 
Isaac Royall ] 

James Russell 
-Esq rs . Tho 8 Flucker vEsq r 

Royall Tyler 
James Pitts 

John Erving 
James Bowdoin 
Tho 8 Hubbard 
Harrison Gray 

M r Bowdoin from the Comittee appointed to prepare a 
humble address to his Majesty, having reported the fore- 
going draft, the same was accepted : and his Excellency 
was thereupon unanimously desired to transmit a fair 
copy of the same to his Majesty's Secretary of State, 
with a request that he would be pleased to lay it before 
his Majesty for his most gracious consideration ; and 
that his Excellency be desired at the same time to recom- 
mend the prayer of the said petition. 


To his Exc Y Fra s Bernard. 

Boston, Sep r 11, 1768. Sunday, A. M. 

S R , — The certain intelligence your Exc y is said to 
have rec d of troops being ordered hither,* & your expec- 

* It was reported that the Governor had said three regiments might be daily expected 
in Boston, two to be quartered in the town, and one at Castle William ; and on the petition of 
a considerable number of the inhabitants a town meeting was held on the 12th, " to consider 
of the most wise, constitutional, loyal and salutary measures to be adopted on such an 
occasion." See The Boston Gazette, Sept. 19, 1768. — Eds. 


tation of their speedy arrival, have a good deal agitated 
the minds of people ; and as we apprehend it is of impor- 
tance, great importance, a Council should be called as 
soon as may be, we desire y r Exc y to call one at four 
o'clock this afternoon when we shall be ready to attend 
your Exc y , either at the Council Chamber or at the 
Province House. We are very respectfully 
Y r Exc ys most obed fc serv ts - 

John Erving. 

James Bowdoin. 

Tho s Hubbard. 

Harrison Gray. 

Tho s Flucker. 

Royall Tyler. 

James Pitts. 

Sunday noon, | past 12 o'clock, Sept r 11. Dl d a letter 
(of w ch the foregoing is copy) to M r Baker, with direc- 
tions to get a horse & carry s d letter iihediately to the 
Gov r at his house at Roxbury, or if not there, at the 
Castle, or wherever he may be. 


New York, Septem r 12 th , 1768. 

Sir, — Having received his Majesty's commands to 
order troops forthwith to Boston, I am to acquaint you 

* Thomas Gage was the second son of the first Viscount Gage, and was born in Eng- 
land in 1721. He was a Lieutenant-Colonel in Braddock's expedition in 1755, and suc- 
ceeded to the command on the death of the General. In 1758 he was with Abercrombie in 
the movement against Ticonderoga; and after the surrender of Montreal in 1760 he was 
appointed military governor of that city. In December, 1763, he succeeded Amherst as 
commander-in-chief of the British forces in North America, with headquarters in New 
York. In February, 177.*], he sailed for England, returning in May, 1774, with the appoint- 
tnent as Governor of Massachusetts. His unsuccessful management of affairs led to his 
recall, and he again sailed for England in October. 1775. He was not afterward in active 
service, and died in England; April 2, 1787. See Appleton's Cyclopaedia of American 
Biography, vol. ii. pp. 569, 570; N. Y. Col. Docs., vol. viii. p. 2-47 note; Dictionary of 
National Biography, vol. xx. pp. 355-357. — Eds. 


that in obedience thereto I have directed his Majesty's 
14 th and 29 th regiments under the command of Lieu* Col 
Dalrymple to embark at Halifax and proceed to Boston as 
soon as possible. One of the regiments is ordered for the 
present to Castle William, the other to the town, and I 
am to beg the favor of you to see that the said troops 
are provided with quarters on their arrival in your gov- 
ernment as by law directed. I have the honor to be, 
with great regard, Sir, 

Your most obed* & most humble servant. 

Tho s Gage. 

His Excell* Gov r Bernard. 



In Council, 19 th Septem r , 1768. 

His Excellency communicated to the Board a letter 
from General Gage of y e 12 th Sept. ins*, acquainting him 
that in obedience to his Majesty's commands he had 
directed the 14 th & 29 th regiments under the command of 
Lieu fc Col Dalrymple to embark at Halifax as soon as 
possible for Boston, one of which regiments is ordered for 
the present to Castle William, the other to the town, and 
asking his Excelly. to see that the said troops be provided 
with quarters on their arrival as by law directed. 

His Excell 7 likewise communicated to the Board a letter 
from the Earl of Hillsborough dated the 30 th July last, 
acquainting him that transports were preparing with all 
possible dispatch in order to proceed to Corke to take on 
board two other regiments which are to be augmented by 
draughts to 500 men each, and signified his Majesty's 
commands that the Gov r do in concert with y e Command 1 * 
in Chief take every necessary step for the reception and 
accommodation of these troops. 


His Excell y thereupon moved to the Board that they 
would take these letters into their deliberate consideration, 
and give him their best advice in what manner provision 
should be made for the reception and accommodation of 
the said troops. 

The Board having debated the matter advised that his 
Excellency give proper orders for the accommodation of 
that regiment destined for the Castle, and with regard to 
the other regiment the Board were of opinion, & accord- 
ingly advised, that as the business in the first instance 
affected the town of Boston, it would be expedient that 
the selectmen of the said town should be apprized of it 
that they may consider in what manner the said troops 
may be accommodated with the least inconvenience to the 
inhabitants, and that John Erving, Ja 8 Bowdoin, Tho 8 
Hubbard, Harrison Gray, Tho s Flucker, Royall Tyler, & 
Ja 8 Pitts, Esq 1 " 8 , be a committee to confer with the said 
selectmen upon the subject, and that the said Committee 
report to y e Gov r in Council as soon as may be. 

The Committee of Council appointed the 19 th instant 
notified the selectmen of Boston to meet them at the 
Council Chamber at 4 o'clock, P. M. of the same day : 
they met accordingly, when the Committee communicated 
the copies of letters laid before the Board to the said 
selectmen, who after a full conference upon the subject of 
them desired the s d copies might be left with them for 
their consideration, and they would report to the Com tee as 
soon as may be. 

The s d selectmen met the Committee Sept. 21, and in- 
formed them that the affair of quartering the troops being 
wholly under the regulation of the act of Parliament rela- 
tive to troops in America, and said act not making it their 
particular duty to provide for the s d troops they can only 
say that it wou'd be for the peace & welfare of the town 
& be attended with the least inconvenience to the inhabi- 


tants that the two regiments expected from Halifax shou'd 
be accommodated in the barracks at Castle William, which 
is part of the town of Boston, so far as they are capable 
of receiving them, and they apprehend there is sufficient 
room in the said barracks for that purpose, and that the 
act of Parliament indispensably requires that the troops 
shou'd be accommodated there, and nowhere else unless 
there be a deficiency of room in the s d barracks. With 
regard to the two regiments said to be coming from Ire- 
land they suppose it will be some time before they can be 
here, and that there will be sufficient opportunity before 
their arrival to consider how they may be accommodated. 
In the name of the Com tee . 

John Erving. 

Boston, Sept r 21, 1768. 

In Council, 22 d Sept., 1768. Present : 

His Excellency, the Governor 

Sam 1 Danforth Ja 8 Russell 

Jn° Erving Tho s Flucker 

W m Brattle Isaac Royall 

Ja s Bowdoin Esq rs . Royall Tyler Esq rs . 

Tho s Hubbard Jeremiah Powell 

Harrison Gray James Pitts 

The Com tee appointed the 19 fch ins* to confer with the 
selectmen of the town of Boston and consider in what 
manner the troops now expected may be accomodated 
with the least inconvenience to the inhabitants reported 
as above. 

The foregoing report having been read in the Council, 
and it appearing from thence that the aid or interposition 
of the selectmen of the town of Boston was not to be ex- 
pected in the case, his Excellency proposed to the Board, 
Inasmuch as there is a large building within the town be- 


longing to the Province called the Manufactory House, 
which is at present under no improvement in consequence 
of an order of the government, and which would accom- 
odate a great part of one of the regiments, that they 
would authorize him to take measures for fitting up the 
said building for the reception of so many of the said 
troops as it will conveniently accommodate, his Excellency 
engaging that if the Province will not pay the expence of 
it, that it shall be done at the charge of the Crown. 

The Council informed his Exc y they would give an an- 
swer to the foregoing proposal to-morrow the 23 d , where- 
upon the Board was adjourned to 10 o'clock, A. M. 

Sept. 22, Post Meridiem. The Council met by them- 
selves, and after fully considering the said proposal 
together with General Gage's letter, & the extract from 
Lord Hillsbourough's letter, appointed a Com tee to prepare 
the draft of an answer to the said proposal, and directed 
them to report it the next day at 9 o'clock, A. M., at 
which time the Council agreed to meet. 

Council Chamber, Sept. 23, A. M., 1768. M r Bowdoin, 
M r Gray, & M r Tyler pursuant to the appointment of the 
Council yesterday P. M., reported to the Board an answer 
to his Excellency's proposal for the accommodation of the 
troops, which answer being considered and amended is 
agreed to by the Board. 

The Board was informed by the Secretary that the 
weather being so stormy the Governor will not be in town 
to-day, and desires they will meet him at the Province 
House to-morrow at 10 o'clock, A. M. 

Saturday, Sept. 24, 1768. The weather continuing 
stormy his Excellency did not come to town till the 
afternoon, when the Council waited upon him with their 

An alteration being proposed in the said answer, it was 
agreed by the Council to meet Monday morning, 9 o'clock, 
the 26 th instant, to consider it ; and his Excell cy informed 


the Council that their answer might then be given to the 
Secretary to be delivered to him without any further 
meeting thereon. 

Sept. 26, A. M. The Council met & agreed to the 
alteration, and then delivered the said answer to the 

The answer follows : 

The Board have taken into their further consideration 
General Gage's letter and the extract from Lord Hills- 
borough's letter communicated by his Excellency on 
the 19 ins*, relative to the reception and accommodation 
of the troops in the said letter & extract mentioned, and 
have also considered his Excellency's proposal of the 
22 d instant, relating to the Manufactory House in Boston, 
that they wou'd authorize him to take measures for 
fitting up the said building for the reception of so many 
of the said troops as it will conveniently accomodate. 
They have also attentively considered the act of Parlia- 
ment providing among other things for the quartering 
& billetting the said troops, and they find that the civil 
officers in the said act mentioned and no others are 
thereby empowered and "required to quarter and billet the 
officers & soldiers in his Majesty's service in the barracks 
provided in the Colonies ; and if there shall not be suffi- 
cient room in the said barracks for the officers & soldiers, 
then & in such case only to quarter & billet the residue " 
of them in such manner as in the said act is further and 
very particularly directed. Now it appears by this par- 
agraph of the said act that in any Colony where there 
are barracks the said officers & soldiers in his Majesty's 
service shall be quartered & billetted in such barracks, 
and in no other place unless there shall not be sufficient 
room in the barracks. With respect to this Colony the 
government of it in the begining of the late war by 
their order caused barracks to be built at Castle William 
for the very purpose of accomodating his Majesty's 


troops whenever it should be necessary for them to come 
hither, under which order the Governor & Council 
are authorized to provide quarters in the said barracks 
for such troops ; and these barracks are sufficient to 
accomodate about one thousand men, which number, 
it is said, the two regiments ordered from Halifax will 
not exceed. Those regiments therefore, which are the 
first expected, the said act of Parliament requires to be 
quartered in the said barracks. General Gage, however, 
in his letter aforesaid mentions that one of the said regi- 
ments is ordered for the present to Castle William, the 
other to the town of Boston ; but it will be no disrespect 
to the General to say that no order whatsoever coming 
from a less authority than his Majesty & Parliament 
can supersede an act of Parliament ; and it is plain the 
General had no intention that the said order should, as 
he concludes his letter by desiring the Governor to see 
that the said troops are provided with quarters on their 
arrival in this government as by law directed. The said 
act also provides " that if any military officer shall take 
upon himself to quarter soldiers in any of his Majesty's 
dominions in America otherwise than is limited and 
allowed by this act, or shall use or offer any menace 
or compulsion," &c, he shall be " ipso facto cashiered, 
and be utterly disabled to have or hold any military 
employment in his Majesty's service.'* His Excellency 
therefore, as the Board apprehend, must clearly see 
by examining the s d act that it is not in the power of 
the Board to provide quarters for the said regiments 
as destined, till the barracks at Castle William and the 
inns, livery stables, and other houses mentioned in the 
said act shall be full (in which " and no other case & upon 
no other acc° it shall & may be lawful for y e Gov r & 
Council" to take the measures they are directed to 
by the s d act for the reception of his Majesty's forces) ; 
nor of consequence to authorize his Excellency to take 


measures for fitting up the Manufactory House agreable 
to his proposal. 

The quartering of troops in the body of the town before 
the barracks are full is not only contrary to the act of 
Parliament, but would be inconsistent with the peace of 
the town ; whose peace & welfare, as also the peace 
& welfare of the Province in general, it is the duty, 
interest and inclination of the Board to promote, and 
which in every way consistent with law they will 
endeavour to promote to the utmost of their ability. 

As the Board on the 19 th ins*, when the letters above 
ment d were first communicated to them, advised that his 
Excell 7 give proper orders for y e accomodation of one of 
y e Halifax regiments in the barracks at Castle W m , so 
they now further advise that his Ex y give like orders for 
the accomodation of the other Halifax regiment in 
the s d barracks. 

With regard to the two regiments ordered from Ireland 
to Boston, the Board doubt not that provision will be 
made for their accomodation agreable to the act 

That the Board might be better able to give their 
advice in regard to the regiments ordered hither they 
thought it necessary that y e whole of Lord Hillsborough's 
letter so far as it related to the s d regiments and to the 
occasion & design of their coming should be communi- 
cated to them, and they accordingly desired his Excell 7 to 
communicate it. But though his Excel! 7 was pleased to 
tell them he should very probably lay the whole of it 
before the Board in such parcels & at such times as he 
thought proper, yet as they apprehend the propriety of 
their own conduct in a great measure depends on the 
communication of y e whole of it together, they again 
request his Excell 7 to favor them with it. 

With regard to the occasion of y e s d regiments being 
ordered to Boston his Excell 7 on being asked informed y e 


Board that he apprehended the Halifax regiments were 
ordered hither in consequence of y e riots in March last, 
& the two Irish reg ts in consequence of that of the 10 th 
June last. On which the Board are obliged to observe 
that they are fully persuaded his Majesty's ministers could 
never have judged it either necessary or expedient to go 
into such extraordinary measures as those of sending 
troops hither, unless in y e representations made from 
hence by some ill-minded persons the s d riots had been 
greatly magnified and exaggerated. 

With respect to what hapend on the 18 March, which 
was a day of rejoicing, and on such days disorders are 
not uncommon in populous places, it was too inconsid- 
erable to make it a subject of representation, and could 
not have been made the subject of so injurious an one 
but by persons disposed to bring misery & distress upon 
the town & Province. 

In regard to y e riot of y e 10 th of June, of which the 
Board have repeatedly expressed their abhorrence, and 
have advised that the perpetrators of it should be prose- 
cuted by the Attorney General, the Board have in their 
answer to his Excell y ' 8 representation laid before them 
the 27 th of July last, given a just account of y e occasion 
of that riot, and as they apprehend it necessary that 
the said account together with all the proceedings at 
that time should be made public they again desire his 
Excell 7 will order the s d representation & answer to be 
printed as soon as may be in the public newspapers.* 

Sept. 29% Castle W m . 
Capt. Smith, com r of his Majesty's ships at Boston, & 
L* Col Dalrymple, com r of the troops on board of the s d 

* The foregoing answer of the Council was printed in a "Supplement Extraordinary 
To the Boston Evening-Post of September 20, 17G8," and the proceedings of the Council 
on the 27th and 29th of July are in a "Supplement Extraordinary," Oct. 10, 1708. — Eds. 


ships, having been desired by the Gov r to attend, were 
likewise present. 

His Exc y the Gov r open d the occasion of the Council's 
being summon d & acquainted the officers aforementioned 
what had been the resolutions of the Council w th regard 
to quartering the s d troops. Whereupon Col Dalrymple 
acquainted the Board that his orders from the Com r in 
Chief were that one of the two regiments now arrived 
should be quartered in y e town of Boston, & that he could 
not consider Castle Island to be the town of Boston within 
the intention of his orders, & that he could not himself 
depart from y e s d ord rs & that he now made a requisition 
for quarters accordingly. Whereupon his Exc y desired 
that the Board would reconsider the proposal he had before 
made to them of fitting up the Manufactory House as 
barracks for the reception of Col Dalrymple' s regiment 
w ch is the regiment destined for the town in case it can be 
done at the expence of the Crown ; and in case they sh d 
adhere to their former resolution that they w d assign the 
reasons thereof. 

To w ch the Board made the follow g reply : 
The Board having already considered the proposal of 
fitting up the Manufactory House as barracks, & his Exc y 
having on application made to him this day in Council 
refused them an opportunity of giving any fuller answer 
than what they have already given to the s d proposal, 
unless done in Council, are under a necessity (saving, how- 
ever, the right of the Board in all cases in their own way 
& manner to make answer to any proposal made to them) 
of referring his Exc y to the answer already given as afore- 
said & which they waited upon his Exc y with on the 24 th 
instant. And whereas by the act of Parliament relative 
to the providing quarters for the troops the quartering 
of them before the barracks & public houses are full is only 
cognizable by the civil officers in the s d act mentioned, 
the Board apprehend Col Dalrymple ought by s d act first 


to apply to the majestrate & civil officers of the town of 
Boston to provide such quarters. 

Monday, Oct 3, 1768. A Council held at the Province 

His Excellency comunicated to the Board a letter from 
1} Col Dalrymple acquainting him that he had rec d orders 
by express from General Gage to land the two regiments 
from Halifax at Boston, & that he was under a necessity 
of demanding quarters for them there, and desiring that 
fuel, straw, and the other articles directed to be provided 
for the troops may be got in readiness. 

Col Dalrymple & Capt. Smith desiring to be admitted 
before the Board came to a determination, they were ad- 
mitted accordingly ; when Col Dalrymple took occasion 
to explain the intention of his requisition, viz. ; that as 
the Board could not think themselves authorized to provide 
barracks in the town, inasmuch as barracks have already 
been provided by the government at Castle William, he 
had encamped some of his troops & was providing barracks 
for the rest in the town, so that he considered them all 
as in barracks, and demanded barrack provisions accord- 
ingly, agreable to act of Parliament. 

Whereupon his Exc y moved to the Board that they 
would appoint some suitable person or persons to make 
such provision. 

The Board desired time to consider the motion ; but the 
Gov T refused it, insisting on an answer imediately. How- 
ever, after much altercation the Gov r adjourned the Board 
to Wednesday, A.M., 10 o'clock, Oct 5, when they gave 
him the following answer : 

Advised, that agreable to his Excellency's motion one 
or more person or persons be authorized & appointed to fur- 
nish & supply the officers & soldiers put and placed in the 
barracks with fire, candles, &c, as particularly mentioned 
in the act of Parliament, provided the person or persons 
so to be authorized and appointed will take the risk of the 

1768.] JOHN TEMPLE. Ill 

Province's paying to him or them all such sum or sums of 
money so by them paid, laid out, or expended for the 
purpose aforesaid. 

And inasmuch as the Board in Col Dalrymple's letter 
aforesaid, dated the 30 th ult°, and before his coming to 
town, observed a suggestion that a bad spirit prevailed 
here, & that in consequence of it Gen 1 Gage had been in- 
duced to order both the regiments to be landed in the 
town ; but as Col Dalrymple must before this time have 
had the fullest evidence that no such spirit is prevalent, 
& that the town is in a state perfectly peaceful and quiet, 
the Board doubt not of his justice to represent it to the 
General accordingly, which they cannot but apprehend 
will procure from the General a recall of his last order, 
and that agreable to his letter to Gov r Bernard of the 12 th 
ult° one at least of the said regiments will be again ordered 
to Castle William. The Board also persuade themselves 
that the same reason will induce the General to order the 
Irish regiments to Nova Scotia or to some other parts 
where his Majesty's service may require them. 

The Board desire the Governor to send by the post to- 
morrow a copy of this minit of Council to Gen 1 Gage, with 
such representations as his Excellency shall think proper 
to induce the General to give such orders as will relieve 
the town & Province from their present anxiety and 

His Exc y nominated Joseph Goldthwait, Jun r , Esq r to 
be comissary for the purpose above mentioned ; and he 
was appointed accordingly. 


Boston, 4 Nov", 1768. 

Dear Sir, — Tired out with the ill-treatment I have 
met with from Gov r Bernard and (through his machina- 


tion) from the gentlemen joined in commission with me, 
I have by this opportunity solicited the Lords of the 
Treasury for leave to come to England, and shall be very 
much obliged to you to forward my request if you have 
any friend at the Treasury that you can now speake to on 
such business. 

As I expect to see you early in the spring I will not at 
this time trouble you with the mention of public affairs, 
further than to say, if goverment do not ere long find 
itself quite aground in this country from the perfidy, 
baseness, & deception of its own servants, I have entirely 
lost what little judgment I may have had, & will thence- 
forth acknowledge myself to be no other than a mere 
dreeming idiot. D r Sir, I am 

Sincerely yours. 

Tho 9 Whatley, Esq. J. TEMPLE. 

Memorandum.* About this time (1768) M r Temple dis- 
covered that M r Hutchinson, in consequence of having been 
informed of the paragraph in Whatley's letter of 18 May, 
1765,t (wherin he expresses his wishes for an acquaint- 
ance with that gentleman) had open'd a correspondence 
with him, that Mess rs Oliver, Paxton, & Rogers also corre- 
sponded with him, as well as Moffatt, Howard. & Ingersoll, 
all of whom M r Temple consider'd as closely united in 
sentiment on the state of affairs in North America, and 
most of them under the lead or influence of Sir Francis 
Bernard. M r Temple at the same time entertain'd not 
even the least doubt that the representations from those 
gentlemen were almost directly opposite to such as he 
should have made, had he continued writing on the sub- 
ject ; and considering also at the same time the uncommon 
address of some of the gentlemen would be rather too 
much for his friend Whatley (a very worthy, honest man, 

* This memorandum, which is in Mr. Temple's handwriting, was filed with the foregoing 
letter. It is on a separate paper, and was evidently written at a much later period. — Eds. 
f Sec ante, p. 55. — Eds. 

1768.] SAMUEL DANFORTH. 113 

but not possessed of the largest share of penetration to 
see into the designs of men, and almost absorbed in a 
passion, if it might be so called, for American taxation, & 
for every artfull sycophant that encouraged and applauded 
the measure) M r Temple declined any further correspon- 
dence on the subject ; nor did he ever that he recollects 
write M r Whatley another line (though he remain'd two 
years after in America) till his arrival in England, of which 
neglect he, M r Whatley, very greatly complain' d in his 
letters to M r Temple's brother with whom he kept on a 


Boston, December 5 th , 1768. 

William Bollan, Esq r , S r , — The Council having 
heretofore experienced your abilities and good disposition 
to serve the Province, and being assured of your readiness 
still to render it all the service in your power, I am de- 
sired by such of them as could convene upon the occasion 
to send you their petitions to the two Houses of Parlia- 
ment, praying for the repeal of the several acts for raising 
a revenue in America, and to request the favor you will 
procure them to be laid before the Lords and Commons as 
soon as may be, according to their respective directions, 
and to use your best endeavours that the prayer of them 
may be answered. 

What lead to this measure, it is needful you should be 
informed of. The Council at the last session of the Gen 1 

* Samuel Danforth, son of Rev. John Danforth, of Dorchester, was born there Nov. 12, 
1696, graduated at Harvard College in 1715, and died in Boston Oct. 27, 1777. He was a 
selectman of Cambridge 1733-1738 and a Representative for a part of the same period. 
From 1739 to 1774 he was one of the Council of Massachusetts; and in the latter year he 
was named a Mandamus Councillor, but was induced to resign by the popular opposition. 
He was also Register of Probate for his county, 1731-1745 ; Judge of Probate, 1745-1775 ; 
and Judge of the Court of Common Pleas, 1741-1775. See Paige's Hist, of Cambridge, 
pp. 531, 532. — Eds. 



Court thought it necessary to petition his Majesty on the 
subject of the said acts, but were not able to complete their 
design in their legislative capacity by reason of the disso- 
lution of the General Court. They, however, at a Board 
of Council afterwards, viz fc , in July last, agreed on a peti- 
tion to the King, and desired Governor Bernard to send it 
to Lord Hillsborough, to be laid before his Majesty, and 
at the same time requested the Governor to recommend 
the prayer of it. # This petition was sent accordingly 
with a letter from the Governor ; Lord Hillsborough 
in answer to said letter writes the Governor, 14 th of 
Septem r , that his Majesty received the petition very 
graciously, and that it would together with the Gover- 
nor's reasonings thereon be taken into consideration. 
The Council, imagining from a paragraph of the Gover- 
nor's said letter a few days ago communicated to 
them that the prayer of their petition might be mis- 
apprehended, thought it necessary the two Houses of 
Parliament should be petitioned on the same subject. 
Accordingly such Gentlemen of the Council as could with 
convenience assemble have agreed on a petition to the 
House of Lords & another to the House of Commons, and 
have desired me to sign them in their behalf, and to trans- 
mit them to you to be presented as above mentioned. As 
the Governor declined giving his consent for petitioning, 
it occasions the petitions being in the name of the major 
part of the Council only ; the other members being too 
remote to be convened seasonably. They were, however, 
unanimously at the last session of the General Court for 
petitioning the Lords and Commons as well as his Majesty, 
but were prevented by the dissolution of the Court ; and the 
Council would have petitioned them last July when they 
petitioned the King, but Governor Bernard not consent- 
ing it was dropt. They may, therefore, be justly consid- 

* See ante, pp. 93-99. — Eds. 

1768.] SAMUEL DANFORTH. 115 

ered as unanimous in the petitions now sent to you, which 
differ in nothing essential from the petition to the King. 

There is a variation, however, in the prayer of these 
last petitions, which is expressly for the repeal of the sev- 
eral American revenue acts ; but in that to his Majesty 
the prayer runs thus, " And if it should appear to your 
Majesty that it is not for the benefit of Great Britain and 
her Colonies that any revenue should be drawn from the 
Colonies, we humbly implore your Majesty's gracious 
recommendation to Parliament that your American sub- 
jects may be relieved from the operation of the several 
acts made for that purpose, in such manner as to the wis- 
dom of your Majesty and Parliament may seem proper." 

The Council intended it should be understood to pray 
for the repeal of the aforesaid acts ; but as in the Gover- 
nor's letter abovementioned it was introduced in such a 
way as to make it doubtful from the word drawn whether 
the Council did not intend to acquiesce in the said acts and 
only prayed that the revenue money arising from said acts 
might not be drawn from or sent out of America to Great 
Britain, it became necessary that in the petitions now sent 
the repeal of those acts should be prayed for in the most 
explicit manner. 

From your several publications and the great pains you 
have taken on the subject of American affairs, the peti- 
tioners have the highest confidence that your best abilities 
will be exerted to procure success to their petitions, on 
which the true interest of Great Britain and that of 
the Colonies so essentially depend. I am with great 
respect, S r , 

Your most obed* hble. serv*. 

(Signed) Samuel Danforth. 

Indorsed by James Bowdoin : " Copy of a letter sent to W m Bollan, Esq r , 
in Henrietta Street, London, with petitions of the Council to the Lords & 
Commons, signed by M r Danforth, President of Council, Dec 5, 1768." 



Cambridge, IS January, 1769. 

Sir, — As you were so good as to use your influence in 
procuring an observation of the last transit of Venus to 
be made in North America, I take the liberty of applying 
to you on account of the next. This next will be much 
more sutable than the last was in the grand problem of 
determining the sun's parallax & distance, for reasons 
which I cannot now stay to explane, but may perhaps do it 
on some other occasion. But for settling this delicate 
point in the most unexceptionable manner, and with the 
greatest certainty, 'tis extreamely important to have as 
many observations as we can, of the whole duration of the 
transit. Most places will admit of observations only of 
the beginning or end ; and both these phases, and so the 
whole duration, can be seen nowhere but in the great 
South Sea, and in the most northern parts of Lapland, 
Russia, Siberia & North America. The government at 
home have sent observers to the South Sea, & 'tis said the 
Czarina has sent 8 companies to the northern parts of her 
empire. With us the end will not happen till above an 
hour after sunset, and the nearest place at which it can 
be observed is Lake Superior. On this occasion I beg 
leave to lay before you an extract of a letter I lately 
received from our worthy countryman D r Franklin. 

" M r Maskelyne (Astronomer Royal at Greenwich) 
wishes much that some of the governments in North 
America would send an astronomer to Lake Superior to 

* John Winthrop, son of Chief Justice Adam Winthrop, -was born in Boston Dec. 19, 
1714, graduated at Harvard College in 1732, and died in Cambridge, May 3, 1779. He was 
for more than forty years, from 1738 until his death, Professor of Mathematics and Natural 
Philosophy in the College; and in this capacity he acquired a high reputation as a teacher 
and investigator. He also took a considerable part in public affairs, was Judge of Probate 
for Middlesex County, and in 1773-4 a member of the Council of Massachusetts. (See Ap- 
pleton's Cyclopaedia of American Biography, vol. vi. p. 575.) For a correspondence 
between him and John Adams, mainly on public affairs, see 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. 
pp. 289-313. — Eds. 

1769.] JOHN WINTHROP. 117 

observe this transit. I know no one of them likely to 
have a spirit for such an undertaking unless it be the 
Massachusetts, or that have a person & instruments sut- 
able. He presents you with one of his pamphlets, which 
I now send you, together with two letters from him to 
me, relating to that observation. If your health & 
strength were sufficient for such an expedition, I should 
be glad to hear you had undertaken it. Possibly you may 
have an eleve that is capable. The fitting you out to ob- 
serve the former transit was a public act for the benefit 
of science that did your Province great honor." Thus, 
Dr. F. 

'Twould be a great pity to lose so critical an opportunity, 
which cannot return in above 100 years to come. It will 
not be difficult to find persons that would undertake the 
expedition, if any method can be found to defray the ex- 
pence. M r Danforth,* our late Tutor, appears quite 
willing to engage in it, and I know of no body better 
qualified for it. He is young, of a firm constitution, and 
of a resolute spirit that would not be baffled by any diffi- 
culties in the way, and has already so much knowledge 
in astronomy that he may in a short time be shown how 
to make all the requisit observations in a proper manner. 
M r Chadwick, who has been employed by this government 
to measure the roads from Boston to Albany, and has 
travell'd. across the country from Penobscot to Canada, 
and made a map of it, is also willing, and would be a very 
proper person to accompany M r Danforth. It would be 
best to join one or two others with them as assistants, and 
for fear of accidents. 

Their journey may be productive of great advantages ; 
besides the transit they may make many other useful ob- 
servations, such as exploring the unknown parts about 

* Thomas Danforth, son of Hon. Samuel Danforth, was born in Cambridge, Sept. 1, 
1744, graduated at Harvard College in 1762, went to Halifax in 1776, and died in London, 
March 6, 1820. — Eds. 


the Lakes, ascertaining the longitude & latitude, not only 
of their astronomical observatory, but (the latitude at 
least) of the several forts they may stop at, and thereby 
rectifying the geography and correcting the maps of this 
country, which are at present so imperfect & so different 
that there is no knowing which to depend upon, or which 
to prefer. For instance, I find Popple's map & Huske's 
differ about 5 degrees in the longitude of Mishillima- 
kinac, and as much in the longitude of S k Michael in Lake 
Superior, & 2 degrees in the latitude. They may also 
observe the variation of the needle whenever they make 
any stop ; a point of great consequence, as it may affect 
both private property and the divisional lines between 
the several governments. They may also probably make 
some useful discoveries that we have no idea of at 

It is not for me to point out any particular method for 
promoting such an expedition. We can have no General 
Court, but if the Govr. would interest himself in the mat- 
ter, perhaps he might find some way to set it on foot ; or 
perhaps if you & Govr. Temple will use your interest with 
Gen. Gage, he may be induced to countenance the affair 
with his authority. I suppose there is no doubt but that 
a convoy of stores will be sent up to the western forts 
early in the spring ; and if our observers might be allowed 
to go under the convoy, with the General's order to the 
commanders of the several forts & vessels on the Lakes to 
be aiding & assisting, the thing might be accomplished 
without any great expence ; and such services as those 
above mentioned, I should think, could not fail of being 
agreable to the Ministry, who always appear desirous of 
gaining the most exact information in every particular 
relating to the Colonies. Or perhaps — but your own in- 
vention will suggest better than I can all the practicable 
methods that can be thought of for this purpose ; & I per- 
suade myself your love of the sciences is such as will 

1769.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 119 

prompt you to exert all your powers in so capital an 
undertaking. With great esteem & respect, I am, Sir, 
Your most obedient humble servant. 

John Winthkop. 


Boston, Jan ry 23, 1769. 
S R , — As y r Exc y is a friend to science any opportunity 
to promote it, I am persuaded, will give you pleasure. I 
beg leave to inform y r Exc y that M r Winthrop, Professor 
of Mathematics & Natural Philosophy at our College at 
Cambridge (a very ingenious gentleman) has rec d letters 
from D r Franklin & M r Maskelyne, on the subject of the 
transit of Venus across the Sun, which it is expected will 
happen on the 3 d of June next ; and those gentlemen & 
others in England, &c, are very desirous it should be 
accurately observed in North America. As the end of the 
transit cannot be observed at any place nearer than 
Lake Superior, it is much to be wished that suitable per- 
sons with proper instruments could be there to make the 
observation. M r Winthrop informs me, by the letter 
which I have the honor of comunicating to you, that it 
would not be difficult to procure proper persons for this 
expedition, if under your Exc y ' 8 authority they could have 
the aid and assistance of the commanders of the several 
forts & vessels on the lakes. If this undertaking, which 
may answer other valuable purposes than observing the 
transit, should meet with y r Exc y ' 8 approbation the 
undertakers would think themselves happy under your 
patronage. I have the honor to be, w rth great regard, 
Y r Exc y ' s most obed*, hble. serv*. 

His Exc 7 Tho 8 Gage, Esq 8 , Gen 1 , &c, at New York. 



Boston, Jan' 7 23, 1769. 

S R , — By this day's post I writ to Gen 1 Gage on the 
subject of the letter you honored me with, & sent him the 
letter inclosed in mine. His answer shall be comunicated 
to you as soon as I receive it. As the purposes w T hich 
may be answered by such an under tak g (beside observing 
the transit) are so useful and of such public concernment, 
I have hopes the Gen 1 will make the expence of it a con- 
tingency within his own department. It will be best, 
however, to be provided w th an estimate of the expence, 
that other means may be looked for to defray it in case 
the Gen 1 cannot. I am, S r , 

Y rs , &c. 


New York, Jan r r 30 th , 1769. 

Sir, — I have received your favor of 23 d ins*, with a 
letter to you from M r Winthrop, Professor of Mathe- 
maticks at Cambridge, on the subject of sending some 
persons skilled in astronomy to Lake Superior to observe 
the transit of Venus. The gentlemen w T ho shall be em- 
ployed in this business may get to Missilimakinac from 
Montreal by way of the Ottawa River with the traders, 
who generally set out from Montreal the beginning of 
May, or may go by Oswego, Niagara, and Detroit. 
Whichever of these routes they may determine upon, they 
may be assured of all the assistance in my power to afford 

I think it would be proper they should touch at Missili- 
makinac, which is the farthest post we have in the upper 
country, as the commander of that post will be able to 
procure them an interpreter, and perhaps engage some 

1769.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 121 

Indians of Lake Superior to accompany them, and it 
would be likewise very proper that the commander should 
give notice to the nations residing on the above lake of 
the intention & design of the observers in going into their 
country, for they are very jealous at the sight of instru- 
ments, which they conceive of use only to survey lands, 
and will immediately suspect us of designs upon their 
lands, unless matters are clearly explained to them. 

When I am informed what the observers shall deter- 
mine upon respecting their operations, I shall not fail to 
provide them with the necessary letters and passes. Some 
gentlemen from Philadelphia made application to me 
some months ago, concerning the like intentions of send- 
ing some astronomers from that province to Lake Superior 
to observe the transit of Venus. Perhaps they would be 
glad to join those from Boston. 

Permit me to enquire after M rs Bowdoin and the rest of 
your family, to whom I beg leave to send my best respects. 
I am, Sir, 

Your most obedient humble servant. 

Tho s Gage. 

Hon ble James Bowdoin. 


Henrietta Street Jan 1- ? 30 th , 1769. 

Sir, — Having on the 16 th inst* received your favour 
inclosing petitions of the major part of the Council of 
the Province to the Lords & Comons, desiring their 
presentation, with my endeavours for their success, I 
have applied myself with diligence to this hard service. 
In order to a right understanding of the present state 
of your affairs, I must observe that on the 15 th day of 
last month the Lords came to certain resolutions, whereby 
they censured the Council & Representatives of the 
Province, and the civil magistrates & inhabitants of 


Boston for several causes, and grafted them on an address 
to the King, which supposes that the subjects in the 
Colonies are liable to be taken from their proper domicil 
& brought into England & there tried for treason or 
misprision of treason. The resolutions & address were 
afterwards sent down to the Comons for their concur- 
rence. Being at this time closely engaged in a difficult 
& laborious work, I had no knowledge of this business 
til some days after its transaction. On being inform'd 
of it, as the resolutions & address were not inserted in 
the votes of the House of Comons, and copies of them 
cou'd not be had otherwise than by or under the author- 
ity of a member, I desired the favour of a principal 
member, & one of your best friends, with whom I had 
before concerted measures for your service, to get me 
proper office copies. He bespoke them with intent that 
I shou'd have them before he went out of town, upon 
the recess of both Houses ; but he did no[t] receive 
them til they came to hand at his seat in the country, 
whence he sent them, desiring me to consider them well 
& send him my thoughts upon them, which I did accord- 
ingly. The reading of them gave me great surprise 
& concern, and the more I considered them, together 
with the temper of the times, the more my concern 
increased. I was a long time much at a loss what to 
do for the advancement of the comon cause ; at length 
as no man loses his domicil by going abroad in public 
service, I determined by petition, as an inhabitant of 
Boston, tho' residing here, to prevent, if possible, the 
concurrence of the House of Comons, and was busy in 
preparations relative to this petition when I had the 
honour to receive your letter. That House was ad- 
journed to the 19 th inst*, & American affairs stood 
appointed for consideration on the 23 d , when your peti- 
tion was intended to have been presented by M r Beck- 
ford, but by a singular event he was prevented. On 

1769.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 123 

the 25 th , after Gov r Bernard's, Gen 1 Gage's & Commodore 
Hood's letters, which on motion made on behalf of the 
Colonies had been on the 20 th brought in & laid upon 
the table, were read, he presented it ; & on his behalf 
M r Ald n Trecothick read it with such an audible voice 
that it is supposed every member in the House clearly 
understood it, and being objected to a debate ensued, 
wherein the petition was nobly supported by divers 
worthy members. The chief objections, I am told, for 
I was not, as formerly, admited into any part of the 
House, were that no Council could be convened without 
the Governour's order, and that by the constitution of 
the Colony there cou'd be no President of the Council, 
unless when there was no Governour or Lieut* Govern 1 ; 
in answer whereto, I am inform' d, it was said that in 
the present great distress of the Province no Assembly 
was called, & no Council convened from time to time 
with liberty to defend upon the present great occasion 
the rights & interest of the Province ; and that the 
objections to your petition, instead of being founded 
on the principles of natural justice, equity, & the con- 
stitution of the kingdom, rested in a good measure on 
the representations of Gov r Bernard, the copies of whose 
letters I have so lately received that I know not of their 
contents, but without opening send them to you as I 
received them,* in order to your receiving further infor- 
mation for your future guideance than I can otherwise 
give you. Upon a large debate, I understand, several 
ministerial persons were enclined to admit your petition, 
& it was at last without any division received & laid upon 
the table, whereupon a motion was made that it should 

I* These letters were printed in Boston in a newspaper extra shortly after they were 
received here, and also in a pamphlet, presumably by Edes & Gill, though the pamphlet 
has no imprint. A second pamphlet containing additional letters and documents was 
printed by Edes & Gill by order of the House of Representatives a few months afterward ; 
and " A Third Extraordinary Budget " was published near the close of the year. Copies 
of all three pamphlets are in the library of the Historical Society. — Eds. 


be refered together with the other papers to a comittee 
of the whole House. Upon this a new debate ensued 
with a consequent division, whereon, I am told, the 
number for refering it was 70, & the number against 
it 133. On the next day my own petition, a copy 
whereof you have inclosed, after my waiting on the 
Speaker & his reading & comending it in some respects, 
was presented by Sir George Saville, who in the opening 
read the whole of it, and which in the course of the 
ensuing debates was well supported by several intelligent, 
respectable & public spirited persons, insomuch that, 
altho' I believe this petition was more disliked by the 
adminis 11 than yours, because it more directly opposed 
their present measures, after a sharp debate upon a 
division, a greater minority, as I am informed, appeared 
in my favour than has appear' d at any time in the 
present Parliam* against the adminis 11 , to wit, 105, or 
as more accurate persons say, 107 (two who came out 
of the House with the others coming in after the 
numbers were declared) against 136. Pray, don't mis- 
take me. This advance was owing to the goodness of 
your cause, rather than to my abilities. After rejecting 
my petition, the House was resolved into a comittee, 
and the debate at large coming on, your cause was 
defended with arguments so forcible, & a spirit so noble, 
that it is impossible for me in my great hurry to do 
justice in any tolerable degree to the parties concern'd ; 
but at 4 o'clock in the morning, the admin 11 carried their 
point by 150 against 90 upon a division. The report 
is to be made four days hence, when another great 
debate will come on, & new matter be advanced, and to- 
morrow, when a full House is expected, a motion will 
be made respecting the accompts of the revenue raised 
in America at so great expense various ways, which have 
not yet been brought in, according to order given upon 
motion made some time past. 


Your petition is the first that has been received since 
introducing the new system of governm* for America. 
One that came from Philadelphia, I am told, was offer' d 
some time ago, but withdrawn, at the proposal of the 
Chan r of the Excheq r , to be presented some other time, 
& I have since heard nothing of it. Having this mo- 
ment received a copy of Gen 1 Gage's letter, which a 
principal member tells me contains some important 
matter, I send it inclosed. 

I am, with the greatest respect for all the members 
of the Council, Sir, 

Your most obed* humble serv fc . 


The Hon ble Sam l Danforth, Esq k . 




The petition of W m Bollan, Esq r , Agent for the 
Council of the Province of Massachusetts Bay in New 
England, most humbly sheweth, 

That the English American Colonies were deduced 
& planted by the adventurers & settlers at their expense 
in foreign inhospitable lands acquired by their vigorous 
efforts, made under the authority of their princes, 
granted with the encouragement proper for this spirited 
& noble enterprize. 

That the several princes by whose authority the 
Colonies were establish'd, and the numerous nobles, & 
other worthy persons, of whom several were men of 
the greatest accomplishments, endued with the wisdom 
proper for obtaining & preserving empire, by whose ad- 
vice, aid & concurence they were undertaken & advanced, 


were so far from understanding that the adventurers 
& settlers who by their travail, expenses, labours, & 
dangers should enlarge the public domin 11 should thereby, 
contrary to natural justice, lessen their public liberties; 
that from the many letters pat 4 royal made & pass'd 
for obtaining & regulating new domin 11 , and the whole 
history of their settlement, it manifestly appears it was 
the intent of all parties that the settlers & their posterity 
shou'd enjoy the same, whereupon they became adven- 
turers, and inspirited by their confidence herein, with 
their long & quiet enjoyment of their public rights, 
overcoming difficulties, perils, & hardships inexpressible 
& innumerable, they raised the King's American empire 
out of a dreary and dangerous wilderness with so great 
& continual encrease of comerce that of late years it 
hath given employment unto two thirds of the British 
shiping, with a comfortable support to no small part 
of the inhabitants of Great Britain, and great addition 
to the dignhVy & strength of its naval empire. 

That by the stat. law of this kingdom it is clearly 
supposed & in effect fully declared that the Colonists 
were well entitled to the English right and the lands 
they inhabit free. 

That the acta regia of Queen Elizabeth & her succes- 
sors whereby the acquests of new domin 11 were made 
& established, and security given to the adventurers, 
planters, & their descendants, of the perpetual enjoyment 
of their public liberties, having, as your petit r presumes, 
never been laid before this Hon ble House, nor the Colonies 
ever yet had an opportunity to ascertain & defend their 
invaluable rights, and the Hon ble House, as your petit r 
is advised, now having under their consideration the 
state of the Northern Colonies, 

Your petitioner humbly prays that he may be admited 
to appear & lay before this Hon ble House authentic 
copies of the proper acta regia, and to support the matters 

1769.] JOHN WINTHROP. 127 

herein contained in a manner suitable to their nature, 
and to the inclinations of this Hon ble House. 




Cambridge, Febry 27, 1769. 

Sir, — Your favor of the 25 th came to my house when 
I was out of town, so could not answer it by the bearer. 
When I reed, from the Govr the vote of Council passed 
upon your motion I was much surprised to find that I 
was desired to go upon this expedition, — a thing I never 
once thought of, nor can I possibly undertake it. I 
should indeed do it with the utmost pleasure if my state 
of health would admit of it, which I am sure it will not. 
But M r Danforth may soon be shewn how to make the 
observations properly, & I shall be very ready to give 
him all the assistance in my power. The instruments 
necessary are, 1st. A good clock. I suppose he will 
readily be allow'd to take that which I carryd to New- 
foundland. 21y. A good quadrant, — an astronomic 
one if to be had : otherwise a Hadley's quadrant might 
serve. I have heard that M r Harrison, the Collector, has 
got an astronomical one, which he might probably be 
willing to lend upon such an occasion. If this should 
fail, a Hadley's quadrant may easily be got. 31y. A 
good reflecting telescope. I suppose one may be bor- 
rowd in Boston. I should think some gent n who may 
own one would not be averse to lending it. It would be 
best to have also as good a refracting telescope as can be 
got, in order to accommodate two observers, both of the 
transit & of Jupiter's satellites, for ascertaining the longi- 
tude. There is one belonging to the College of 8 feet in 
length which no doubt may be had, but if a longer could 
be procured it would be better. Soon after the College 


was burnt M r Edm d Quincy, Junr, offerd to sell one of 
12 feet in length, as I remember. If this could be had, 
or another of about that length, especially in a sliding 
tube (for the convenience of carriage) it would do better. 
These are all the instruments necessary for the principal 
observations. But for others which may be of great use, 
they may have here a barometer, by which may be 
determind the real hight of the lakes above the level of 
the sea ; a thermometer to compare that climate with 
ours, — instruments which perhaps were never seen in 
that upper country ; and a compass to observe the varia- 
tion of the needle. 

As Mr. Hancock is waiting for the letter I have only 
time to add that Mr. Danforth is in hopes Mr. Willard 
will accompany him with the leave of the Overseers & 
Corporation, & that Mr. Sewall will take care of his class. 
He also expects Dr. Cobb, of Taunton, an ingenious young 
gent n , who is now a Senior Bachelor, & Mr. Chadwick, 
who has been imployd by the governm* in exploring & 
measuring the country. These four are the whole com- 
pany that is proposd to go. I have talk'd with Mr. 
Band, a young man who is well acquainted with the 
country about the lakes, & is now setting out upon a 
journey thither. He thinks the sooner they set out for 
Albany the better ; & that it would tend very much to 
insure success if the General could beforehand send up 
orders to the commanders of the King's vessels on the 
lakes to be in readiness to transport the company from 
Oswego to Niagara, & from thence directly to Missili- 
mackinaw. But, will it be best to write to the General 
for such orders till the Council have finally settled the 
matter ? I am not qualify'd to make any estimate of the 
expence. Commodore Loring can very probably do it. 
I had not the pleasure of seeing him last Saturday. 
With much respect, I am, Sir, 

Y r most obed t serv*. 

J. Wintiirop. 

1769.J JAMES BOWDOIN. 129 


Boston, Feb? 26 th , 1769. 

S R , — The letter of the 30 th ult°, with which y r Exc y 
hon d me, I coinunicated to M r Winthrop & the others 
concerned. They are much obliged to y r Ex cy for assur- 
ing them of all the assistance in your power & that 
you will provide them with the necessary letters & passes. 
They purpose to go by the way of Albany, Oswego, 
Niagara & Detroit, and hope to receive the letters & 
passes and also your instructions either here or at Albany, 
for which place they will be ready to set out from hence 
by the 12 th of March, and will proceed as soon as they 
can hear from your Excellency. It being necessary they 
should be on Lake Superior some days before the Transit, 
y r Exc y will perceive how essential it is they should have 
all the dispatch possible at the several posts. What you 
are pleased to mention to prevent or remove the jealousy 
of the Indians is a most necessary measure. 

The party will consist of four, — M r Danforth and 
three assistants. It was hoped M r Winthrop would go 
himself, but his health will probably not permit him. 
They will be very glad to join with the gentlemen from 
Philadelphia. In case there be two parties, M r Winthrop 
thinks it w d be best when they get to Lake Sup r they 
should seperate at as great a distance as may be on the 
Lake, in order that if the sun should be obscured by 
clouds from one, the other may have a chance of making 
the observation. The going of this party will depend on 
the Gov r & Council making provision for them, of which 
(from their approbation of the proposal as soon as made to 
them the last week, w ch was as soon as it could be after 
the rec fc of y r letter) there is the highest probability. 
They referd for several reasons the determination thereon 
till next Wednesday. By the Thursday post I shall let 
y r Exc y know what their determination is. In the mean 



time I thought it needful you should be informed in 
what situation this matter is, that such measures may 
be taken as y r Exc y may think the shortness of the time 
makes imediately necessary. I have this moment rec d a 
letter from M r Winthrop in which he says, " it will tend 
very much to insure success if the General could before- 
hand send up orders to the comand rs of the King's vessels 
on the Lakes to be in readiness to transport the company 
from Oswego to Niagara, & from thence directly to 
Missilimakinac." M rs Bowdoin joins me in the most 
respectful compliments to y r Exc y & y r lady. I am, & c . 

March 1, 1769. 

S R , — By last Monday's post I informed y r Exc y , it was 
probable the Gov r & Council w d make provision to enable 
M r Danforth, &c, to go to Lake Superior ; but this day 
having again considered the affair they found themselves 
unauthorized to engage in it, & therefore it must drop, 
unless y r Exc y sh d think proper to undertake it in behalf 
of the Crown, about which Gov r Bernard told me he 
would write to y r Exc y by to-morrow's post. I am sorry 
for the trouble this affair has occasioned y r Exc y , & am 
most respectfully, S r , Y rs , &c. 

March 27, 1769. 

S R , — Agreable to y r Exc y ' a proposal in your letter of 
the 13 th a subscription would have taken place but the 
indisposition of the principal undertaker and shortness of 
the time, w ch will not permit another to prepare himself, 
would have rendered it of no avail. It is probable the 
Transit will be observed at Cambridge with all the 
advantage the situation of that place will admit, and it 
is hoped it will be accurately observed at New York and 
Philadelphia. M rs Bowdoin, M r & M rs Temple join with 
me in regards to y r Exc y & lady. I am, S r , Y rs , &c. 

1769.] WILLIAM BOLL AN. 131 


Henrietta Street, March 18 th , 1769. 

Sir, — On the 15 th inst* when the American mutiny 
bill was moved in the House of Comons, the Secry at 
War mention'd a clause which he had prepared for pro- 
viding that in case the civil magistrate shou'd not quarter 
the troops according to the act, the comissary shou'd be 
enabled to quarter them upon private houses. This 
proposal being disrelish'd by many, the Chanc r of the 
Exchequer declared he had not been acquainted with it, 
& desired the Secry at War to withdraw it, tho' two of 
the most intelligent members have told me they were 
persuaded that this measure was concerted by the 
Ministers, in order to be avow'd or disclaim'd as they 
shou'd find it relish'd or disrelish'd by the House, & that 
the proposal was artfully made in subservience to this 
design. When first inform'd of this affair by one of 
these gentlemen I ask'd, who was to judge of the civil 
magistrate's defect, to which he answer'd, the military. 
It is needless to mention the observation thereupon made, 
that when once the military are appointed judges over 
the civil powers the game is at an end. Both these 
gentlemen suppose that no future motion will be made 
for introducing this clause. 

The representation of New York to the House of 
Comons was presented this week by M r Trecothick & 
rejected. He was seconded by M r Beckford, who says 
that he did his utmost, after it had been read in the 
motion, to have it brought up & laid upon the table, so 
that it might be publish' d in the votes, as your petition 
had been. M r Trecothick having shew'd it me last week, 
when it was intended to have been presented, I found the 
whole matter was couch'd in very decent terms, & granted 
all the powers of governm* that cou'd be desired, save that 


of taking money out of their pockets, & for which it was 
deem'd inadmissible. 

Some considerable time past, when vertual represen- 
tation was contended for, a man of great character 
desired my opinion upon the point of taxation. After 
observing that any pretended representation of the 
Comons in the Colonies by men chosen by the Comons of 
Great Britain was in my mind void of comon sense & 
comon justice, I declined giving the opinion desired as I 
had not then fully consider 'd the matter. On subsequent 
consideration it appear'd that the monies raised on the 
people of Great Britain originate in the free gift of the 
Comons, & that the subsequent taxation by the whole 
legislative authority is only the means of enforcing the 
gift, and that it was incompatible with the nature of 
such gift & with the imutable nature of things for the 
British Comons to make a free gift of the money of a free 
people in another quarter of the world, from whom they 
have no delegated authority. The knights, citizens, & 
burgesses of Great Britain in Parliament give & grant their 
own money, together with the money of the other British 
Comons ; but the gift of the money of the Colonists is 
made in exoneration of both. 

The ministers, I understand, are desirous of concluding 
the dispute with the Colonists, for the present at least, in 
their own way, and at different times it has been said they 
wou'd promote a repeal in case the Colonies wou'd 
petition for it on the foot of inexpediency, relinquishing 
or waving their claim of exemption from taxation ; 
whether by waving they mean a temporary or perpetual 
relinquishment, or none at all, I leave to your judgment, 
& likewise whether they intend such a palliative as may 
prevent the stagnation of trade which they fear, & 
possibly regard more than your welfare, and whereby 
they may gain time to carry on other designs. If a 
perpetual & satisfactory settlement be intended, and per- 

1769.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 133 

petual, I conceive, it cannot be without being satisfactory, 
it appears strange that they shou'd proceed to hang a rod 
over you, by searching after traitors in order to their trans- 
portation & trial here, when there was no treason existing, 
as what appears not is not, & behave so disagreeably other 
ways. If your petition for a repeal, without mention of 
taxation does not imply a relinquishment of your claim, 
then their repeal on the grounds of inexpediency wou'd not 
imply a relinquishment of the power of taxing ; and 
I have observed that they who begin a mischief shou'd 
begin «the reformation of it. This proceeding supposes 
that no relief can be had this session. One of the British 
members has mention'd as an healing expedient that the 
government shou'd reserve the power of taxing, but after 
determining the quota leave the raising to the Colonies. 
How far this wou'd change the med'cine farther than 
gilding the pill, I leave to you. What motions or 
measures will take place after the holidays it is impossible 
for me to say. I am with great respect, Sir, 

Your most obedient humble servant. 


The Hon ble Sam l Danforth, Esq r . 


Henrietta Street, March 23 d , 1769. 

Sir, — Capt n Coleman not having taken his bag yester- 
day, according to appointment, I desire leave to trouble 
you so much farther as to observe that, if my memory 
does not deceive me, on your taking Cape Breton in 1745, 
the Duke of Newcastle, Secretary of State, in pursuance 
of the late King's order, by letter to Gov r Shirley declared 
that his Majesty highly approved of your conduct and 
gave assurance of his royal favour to the Province with 
direction that this, or what was written to this effect, 
should be communicated to the Gen 1 Court, and that the 


same was comunicated accordingly. The present state of 
the times & parties is such that it is difficult to take any 
step relative to the interest of the Colonies, after making 
the most circumspect observations of what concerns them ; 
but my present purpose being to write & publish as soon as 
conveniency & propriety will admit some farther account of 
the establishment, rights and merits of the Colonics, I desire that 
you will be pleased to send me an authentic copy of what 
was communicated to the General Assembly on this great 
occasion, which may serve for this or some other beneficial 

Upon presenting my petition several worthy persons, 
friends of the Colonies, desired it might be publish'd, and 
one of them offer' d to undertake the publication, in case I 
would consent to it, which I believe I should have done, 
if the care of your depending petition had not render'd 
the prudence & propriety of it doubtful, and this gentle- 
man has lately said that as the publication had been so 
long delayed, and the petition wou'd without question be 
printed in America, it was now best to wait for that, & 
reprint it here which he intended. 

The American mutiny bill has pass'd both Houses, & 

will receive the royal assent to-da} T , without the clause for 

provisional quartering of soldiers upon private houses, 

which has not been moved a second time ; other clauses 

have been brought in, of which two pass'd that favour' d 

those Colonies whose laws received the royal sanction, 

one being brought in by M r Pownal, & the other by M r 

Garth. I am this instant come from the House of Cohlons, 

where the two clauses were read to me by one of the clerks, 

but in so great hurry, as the royal assent is to be given 

within half an hour, that I cannot be more particular, 

but must conclude to save the ship, and am with great 

respect, Sir, 

Your most obedient humble servant. 

W. Bollax. 

Tiik IIon blh Sam l Danfoktii, Esq r . 

1769.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 135 


Henrietta Street, April 22 a , 1769. 

Sir, — Since the recess of Parliament, as well as before, 
proposals have been mention' d for partial repeal & qualifi- 
cation of the measures which are so grievous to the 
Colonies. I understood from a principal member, & one 
of your chief friends, that M r Pownal mention'd a proceed- 
ing of this kind to him, who answer'd, this tended to rivet 
the chains upon the Colonists, that he wou'd oppose it if 
made, but would second a motion for general relief, and 
that M r Pownal afterwards enlarged his idea, & declared 
he wou'd make a motion in the House on Wednesday last, 
whereupon I drew up & settled with M r Bridgen, a mer- 
chant in the city, who undertook the publication, a card 
that was published that morning, whereof you have a copy 
inclosed. Before the intended motion was consider'd in 
the House I was well apprized of its intended rejection by 
the Ministry, with their manner of doing it. However, 
attending in the House to hear what pass'd, M r Pownal 
moved that the last act shou'd be refer'd for considera- 
tion to a comittee of the whole House on Monday next, 
when he would first propose, among other matters, if I 
understood him aright, that a resolution shou'd pass for 
repealing this act so far as it imposed duties on British 
manufactures. It was seconded by M r Ald n Trecothick, 
and, after another member's speaking in support of the 
motion, the Chanc r of the Exchequer rose up, opposed it, 
& then moved, as I expected he wou'd, for the order of 
the day, which you are sensible takes place of other mo- 
tions. He objected, among other things, to the first motion, 
that it was made at the close of the session. Considering 
the importance of the subject, & that Parliaments had at 
other times sat later than the consideration of it required, 
this appear'd strange to me. It is impossible to relate all 
that pass'd. A general sense seem'd to prevail in the 


House that this act was improper, yet there were but few 
who argued for the immediate consideration of it. Colonel 
Bar re proposed a declaration that they wou'd in their 
next session revise all the American acts pass'd in this 
King's reign. This seem'd to be opposed with more vehe- 
mence than the original motion ; whereupon the proposal 
was reduced to the act in question ; but this was opposed 
by the Chanc r of the Excheq r , who seem'd from first to 
last determined not to admit any express declaration to be 
made to the Americans containing any promise of future 
consideration, and some of the expressions proposed, as it 
was observed to him, plainly contain'd no promise. Much 
altercation hereupon ensued, and it seem'd to be the sense 
of a great part of the House that the matter shou'd cer- 
tainly be consider'd in their next session, and Sir William 
Meredith, who is member for Liverpool, declared that he 
wou'd then move it. M r Beckford, who from first to last, 
was more explicit & determinate for a general repeal than 
any of the members whom I solicited, after censuring the 
errors of Ministers, among other things spake to this effect, 
that he had authority to declare that the Americans had 
been obliged to pay far more for the duties on paper than 
were imposed by the act. His first expression was that 
they had paid double ; the next was that they had paid 
infinitely more than they ought to have paid, wherein he 
was gainsaid by nobody, and it having been objected that 
the combinations of the Americans to avoid the consump- 
tion of British manufactures were illegal, he observed that 
every man doubtless had a right to take such order with 
respect to the cloathing of his own family as he shall 
think fit. The design of the Ministers, as far as I could 
collect it, was to enforce quiet & obedience, with the avoid- 
ance of such combinations, in order to the future consider- 
ation of the last act ; but the continuance of an act which 
apparently ought never to have pass'd, by way of distress 
upon the Colonies, which by its operation will in my 

1769.] WILLIAM BOLL AN. 137 

opinion distress this kingdom more than them, is a piece 
of policy which I cannot comprehend. For my own part 
I have from first to last urged the necessity & utility of 
considering the American grievances at large, in order to 
a general remedy. Upon mentioning to M r Beckford a 
motion for considering the state of America, he said he 
had already made that motion, and it could not be repeated 
in the same session. One of the members observed that 
it would be a very meritorious thing in any man who 
shou'd devise a proper method of conciliating the differences 
with the Colonies. There are, I conceive, no two countries 
in the world better adapted for mutual welfare than Great 
Britain & British America, and as Ministerial errors were 
the chief source of the present calamities, I am sorry that 
they who began the mischief have not been more enclined 
to begin the reformation of it. I am with great respect, 
Sir, Your most obedient humble servant. 


The Hon blb Sam l Danforth, Esq. 


Henrietta Street, May 6 th , 1769. 

Sir, — Since my last several intelligent persons have 
told me that the late motion for considering the last 
American act was Ministerial at bottom. Just before it 
was made a worthy gentleman, and one of your few sin- 
cere friends, who was going into the House, observed to 

me that the mover was a closet companion of L 

H ,* considering which, with his fraternal connection,! 

he had no opinion of the motion. After some doubt, I 
thought it was proper to mention this matter to you, and 

* Lord Hillsborough, President of the Board of Trade and Plantations. — Eds. 
t Governor Pownall's elder brother, John Pownall, was Secretary of the Board of Trade 
and Plantations. — Eds. 


need not say it is improper to be divulged, as thereby it 
would probably be ecchoed back disagreeably here. I am/ 
Sir, Your most obedient humble servant. 

The Hon ble Samuel Danfortii, Esq b . 


Boston, May 10, 1769. 

Dear Sir, — I take the first opportunity of acknowledg- 
ing the receipt of your agreable favor of the 3 d of Feb y .t 
I cohlunicated it to the gent n of the Kennebeck Company, 
and with their best compliments they return you thanks 
for the explanation you gave to M r Goostree of the points 
on which their cause best rests, and they doubt not it will 
be very useful to him & the cause. With regard to the 
operation of this cause in relation to the Province Charter 
I would observe upon it, that the lawyers of the Company 
were of opinion the Charter allowed an appeal to the King 
in Council, as it is mentioned therein to be necessary 
" that all the King's subjects should have liberty to appeal 
to him," with no other limitation than that it should be 
" in cases that may deserve the same." This, they said, 
included cases of, every kind, real, personal, & mixed, 
and consequently included the Company's case, which, 
therefore, in their opinion, must be one of those specially 
stipulated cases defined in the Charter. What follows 
in the Charter, they said, was explanatory of what per- 

* Thomas Pownall was born in Lincoln, England, in 1720 or 1722, and first came to 
America in October, 1753, as private secretary to Sir Danvers Osborn, Governor of New 
York. In 1757 he was appointed to succeed Shirley as Governor of Massachusetts, which 
office he held until June, 1700, when he sailed for England, having been previously 
appointed Governor of South Carolina, though he never assumed the government. He 
was for many years a member of Parliament, and a prolific writer on political subjects, 
mainly connected with the Colonies. He died at Bath, February 25, 1805. See Appleton's 
Cyclopaedia of American Biography, vol. v. pp. i)'J, 100; Dictionary of National Biography, 
vol. xlvi. pp. 264-268.— Eds. 

t Governor Pownall's letter of Feb. 3, 1709, to which this is the answer, is printed in 
Proceedings, vol v. pp. 237, 23S. — Eds. 

1769.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 139 

sonal actions an appeal should be allowed in, viz., such 
" wherein the matter in difference doth exceed the value of 
£300 st g ." I have understood it was M r Pratt's opinion 
that all the King's subjects have individually an indefeasi- 
ble right by the English constitution to appeal to him in 
all cases, and that that right would have remained the 
same even tho the Charter had in the fullest manner 
denied an appeal. Besides, it is further said that the 
Kennebeck grant being made to the Colony of New 
Plymouth, the bounds of it are properly determinable by 
the King in the same manner as the bounds of any other 
Colony, about which there is any dispute. But I do not 
hold myself responsible for any of these opinions. The 
fact, however, particularly in Rhode Island, is said to be 
that frequent appeals are made in land cases from judg- 
ments of their Courts to the King in Council, whose 
judgment is final and carried into execution. 

With regard to Ministerial politics as relative to the 
Colonies, the face of things is gloomy & disagreable. 
The measures pursued for some years past have been very 
prejudicial to both countries. America, however (if at all) 
will suffer the least of the two ; and in the long run will 
probably be greatly benefitted by the dispute, which was 
very impoliticly and unnecessarily brought on. It seems 
to have arisen, if national enemies are out of the question, 
from a mistaken idea of the ability of the Colonies, in 
which idea administration was probably encouraged by 
persons here, who expected to share in the revenue by an 
increase of salary or appointment to office. But it is a 
real fact that the Colonies have no money among them 
that can answer any national purpose of revenue. The 
money that comes to them thro the several channels of 
their trade is sent to Great Britain towards paying the 
balance continually against them, to which balance all the 
money on the English part of the continent is not equal. 
The cry for paper money at New York, and in most of 


the Colonies to the southward, and their repeated applica- 
tions to Parliament to take off the restraint upon them 
in regard to it, demonstrate there's very little real money 
among them. The complaint of the want of money has 
been great here, but the experience we long had of the 
evils of a paper currency has made us hitherto willing 
to submit to any inconvenience rather than introduce it 
again. At present, however, the complaint in some 
measure subsides, as the new guardians of our liberty 
and rights scatter with the pox some of their loose money. 
If money is not to be had from the Colonies, more than 
what is had in the way of trade, to what purpose is it to 
continue the present revenue acts or to make any more ? 
The account of the American revenue for 15 months, 
after deducting the expence of the Board of Commission- 
ers & its appendages, &c, makes a balance, I am told, 
of not more than £12,000 in favor of the Crown, and the 
collection of this money has been more distressing to the 
trade than I could have apprehended, and will be equally 
distressing whatever name the tax it arises from bears. 
'Tis scarcely worth while to dispute about the nature of 
the tax, whether it shall be an internal or external one, 
where there is no money to answer any tax. Was the 
right of Parliament to tax the Colonies acknowledged in 
the fullest manner, & the Colonists as willing to pay the 
tax as Parliament to demand it, the right would not be 
worth six pence to the nation, for the exercise of it would 
be a detriment to the nation in its trade in a much greater 
proportion than the revenue would be an advantage to it. 
It is therefore a national misfortune that the great pains 
you have taken with Ministry to explain to them the 
wisdom & necessity of returning to the old practice of 
laying port duties, not (as I understand you) for the 
purpose of revenue, but meerly for the regulation of trade, 
were unsuccessful, at least so far as that altho they adopted 
your sentiments, they could not be persuaded, on account of 

1769.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 141 

the declarations, riots, & tumults in opposition to acts of 
Parliament, to adopt the measure you propose. 

It is manifest those riots and tumults by the representa- 
tions that have been given of them have had a strong 
effect upon Ministry, but they existed only in those repre- 
sentations, excepting what is called the riot of the 10 th 
of June.* This, notwithstand s y e representations of it, 
was a trifling affair, and was not in opposition to any 
act of Parliament, but sprung, as you have often heard, 
from the wickedness of a certain junto here, so that those 
pretended riots, when truth can gain credit, will no longer 
be an obstacle to the adoption of your measure. With 
regard to the declarations, it is certain, that it is the sense 
of the Province and all the Colonies that Parliament has 
no right to tax them, and they have declared this sense 
in repeated resolutions of their respective Assemblies. 
If indeed the reversal of the Ministerial measures is to 
depend on the reversal of those declarations it will never 
take place, and things must take their natural course. 
How they will end is uncertain. But the tendency of them 
will be such, & is such already, as that Great Britain in a 
few years thro all its members must feel the pernicious 
effects of the present system of politics, and in consequence 
of that feeling universally execrate the authors and abet- 
tors of it. In the political game now playing off all the 

ihances are against her. She can gain nothing and 
may lose everything. A late Gov r of your acquaintance 
[S r Danvers Osborn] is said to have left on his table the 
evening of his death this line — Quern Dens vult perdere 

n-iiis dementat. 

* "Last Friday evening some commotions happened in this town, in which a few win- 
dows were broke, and a boat was drawn thro' the streets and burnt on the Common; since 
which things have been tolerably quiet; it being expected that the cause of this disturbance 
will be speedily removed." (See The Boston Gazette, June 13, 1768.) The occasion of 
these "commotions" was the seizure of John Hancock's sloop, the Liberty, for smuggling. 
The windows of John Williams, the Inspector General, and of Benjamin Hallowell, the 
Comptroller, were broken ; some other officials were roughly handled ; and the Collector's 
pleasure-boat was burned. See Drake's History of Boston, pp. 735, 736. — Eds. 




The measure you suggest, if you can effect it, will be a 
capital one ; and (as you observe) may save all from 
destruction, into which things are running. Your knowl- 
edge of this Province in particular and America in general 
qualifies you to draw a petition that would be agreable 
to them, and if at the same time you can frame it so as 
that it would be received by Parliament and procure the 
removal of American grievances you will be justly inti- 
tled to the first character among the friends of the nation 
and its Colonies. If this can be done, your abilities & 
application can effect it, and will be exerted. So far as 
the success of such a measure may depend on the Assem- 
bly here, the co-operation of your friends and the friends 
of both countries, I am persuaded, will not be wanting to 
procure it. But it will be necessary (as you suggest) that 
they should understand beforehand that government will 
receive the petition you propose should be sent for the 
consideration of the Assembly here. 

The whole exertions of our late Governor in the House 
of Commons in favor of the town & Province have given 
universal satisfaction. His speech on that occasion (with 
a copy of which I am favored) is excellent, & has been 
reprinted here.* To restore peace & order again (as he 
justly observes) the old policy must be resumed & 
directed by the spirit of commercial wisdom. This spirit 
will dictate that all imposts and duties must be for the 
sole purpose of regulating trade, without any view to 
revenue whatever. But peace, harmony, & confidence can 
never be restored even by this spirit, unless it procures 
the removal of some persons here from office, and particu- 
larly Gov 1 " Bernard, in whom all confidence is lost. 'Tis 
in vain to expect a return of harmony while he is in the 
chair. From other views than national he will be putting 

* In the Library of this Society is a pamphlet of sixteen quarto pages, entitled "The 
Speech of Th—m—s P—icn—U, Esq.: Late G— v— rn— r of this Province, in the H— se of 
C— m— ns, in favor of America." It has no imprint, but in the Boston newspapers of 
April, 17G9, it is advertised as for sale by Edes & Gill and T. & J. Fleet. — Eds. 

1769.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 143 

Ministry up on revenue projects and other disgustful 
measures, and be eternally agitating them by his repre- 
sentations, in which he has a peculiar knack at making 
mountains of mole hills, & idle chitchat, treason. M r 
Bollan has sent to the Council an authenticated copy of 
six of his many letters laid before Parliament, in which 
letters he has abused the Council as immoderately as 
unjustly, and has not disdained the aid of falsehood to 
represent them in an infamous light. A majority of the 
Council (the whole could not, by reason of the difficulty of 
convening them) have wrote a letter to Lord Hillsborough 
containing a vindication of the Council against the cal- 
umny & misrepresentations of the Gov r & have sent it 
under cover to M r Bollan to be dl d to his Lordship. 
They conclude their letter by telling his L d ship that his 
Majesty's service cannot be carried on with advantage 
during M r Bernard's administration. 

What the town, the Province, and all the Colonies most 
ardently wish, and upon which the internal peace of the 
two former, and the restoration of harmony between 
Great Britain and the whole of them, next to the removal 
of their capital grievances, depend, is the removal of Gov r 
Bernard. You cannot do a more essential service to this 
Province than to procure his removal, & that service in its 
happy consequences will extend to all the rest, & to the 
mother country also. If you have any inclination of com- 
ing to America again, I hope you will be his successor ; 
and this hope I have often heard warmly expressed by 
some of the most respectable characters among us. Such 
an appointment would give me great pleasure. I am with 
r great truth & regard, d r S r , 

&c. ? &c. 



Henrietta Street, June 21 st , 1769. 

Gentlemen, — Having had the honour of receiving your 
letter of the 15 th of April, accompanied with dispatches 
for Lord Hillsborough, it gave me great pleasure to find 
that my endeavours to promote the public service were so 
agreeable to yourselves & the Province. 

The detention of letters to Ministers being deem'd dis- 
respectful, after reading yours, with the papers relating 
to it, I carried the packet to his Lordship's house, & he 
not being at home, nor his deputy there, I deliver'd it to 
his servant. On the second subsequent attendance being 
admited, a conversation of some length & freedom ensued, 
wherein his Lordship express'd great regard for the Col- 
onies, and declared to this effect, that the mutual welfare 
of the kingdom & the Colonies was. so closely connected 
that either cou'd receive no harm without the others suf- 
fering, & that as little distinction as possible shou'd be 
made between them. Among other things I took the 
liberty of observing that the repeal of the whole Gren- 
villean system, with the grafts made upon it, wou'd in my 
poor opinion be a salutary measure, that if all the minutiae 
of regulations & restrictions which tend to the embarras- 
ment & diminution rather than the advancem' of trade 
were laid aside, and the Colonies took from Great Britain 
all the European & Asiatic coiiiodities which they con- 
sume, & brought to the British market those products 
which were fit for it, and their other trades were favour'd, 
this wou'd encrease the comerce & navigation of both 
countries, with the demand for British manufactures, and 
in circuit bring far more money into the Exchequer freely 
than can be done by such measures as have been lately 
taken, and that the richer the Colonies were the more 
they cou'd & wou'd take from the mother country, & the 
better it wou'd be for them both. His Lordship seem'd to 

1769.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 145 

like this plan of comerce, but as to the total repeal I 
noted neither assent nor dissent. I observed that all the 
Colonies had been strangely united for the purpose of 
judicature, all the offences against numerous penal statutes 
comited at land being made cognizable in a new Court of 
Admiralty, which proceeding according to the civil law 
was moreover unconstitutional. His Lordship said that 
four courts had been lately appointed, whereupon the only 
gentleman present observed that the objections held 
against them. His Lordship express'd a very high regard 
for the conduct of Gov r Bernard, consider'd in relation to 
this kingdom & the Province. On my enquiry, he said 
your letter lay before his Maj y , and on desiring in your 
name the copies you mention, he said that no copies of 
state papers cou'd be given without the King's order. I 
am persuaded that his Lordship has not the chief minis- 
terial direction of American affairs. The result of a 
political consultation had some time past, according to 
my intelligence, was to advise his Maj y , 1. To support 
the regal & Parliamentary authority over the Colonies ; 
2. That no farther revenue shou'd now be raised there ; 
and 3. That the last American act shou'd be repealed in 
the next session, in case the Americans shou'd in the mean 
time behave properly. Of this proceeding, I presume, you 
have before this time had some notice. His Lordship 
censured some publications of the Council, as inconsistent 
with the duty of the King's counsellors. I was not well 
enough acquainted with these proceedings to defend or 
excuse them, & need not observe that unless necessitv 
requires, publication ought not to precede application to 

After meeting with unexpected difficulties, which I can- 
not at present explain, I have obtain'd, and now send, 
copies of all Gov r Bernard's letters laid before the House 
of Comons in the former part of their late session,* that is, 

* See note ante, p. 123. — Eds. 


before I gave particular attention to your affairs. Your 
answer to the several charges contain'd in the letters 
formerly transmited has been well approved in point of 
matter & manner by a member of the first character, to 
whom alone I have yet shewn the copies. I have scarcely 
had time to hear the letters now sent once read, & there- 
fore can say nothing in consideration ; their contents & 
bare reading astonish'd me extremely. They will prob- 
ably explain the proceedings relative to your distress, & 
I doubt not you will exercise all the wisdom, diligence, 
& caution which your own honour & the welfare of the 
Province on this occasion require. 

I am at present closely engaged in an affair which I 
hope will in its consequence serve you, and am so straiten'd 
in time that, to save the ship, I must without a review of 
what I have written conclude, and am, with the greatest 
respect, Gentlemen, 

Your most obedient & most humble servant. 


P. S. Several of the letters now sent contain such 
charges upon the selectmen & the town of Boston, that I 
desire you wou'd be pleased to let them have copies. I 
intended to send to the selectmen authentic copies, and to 
write to them by this conveyance, but find it impossible. 

The IIon ble Sam l Danforth, Esq r , & others. 


Poland Street, June 23 d , 1709. 

Gentlemen, — Upon a careful examination of the 
papers relating to "your proceedings, with those of his 
Majesty's Ministers & officers, civil & military, laid 
before the House of Couions in their late session. I have 

1769.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 147 

desired copies of sundry letters from Lord Hillsborough & 
others, and copies of two memorials from the Comiss rs of 
the Customs, with the annex'd papers to be made out 
with dispatch, in order to be sent to you by Capt. Scott, 
who is near sailing. I have at present very little expec- 
tation of being able to obtain any farther copies, and 
those transmited cou'd not, I am well satisfied, have been 
got if they had not been laid before the House of Comons, 
which entitles the members to copies ; and the clerks 
were so stagger'd by the contents of Gov r Bernard's 
letters, of which I sent copies by Capt. Smith, & now 
send duplicates, that I was obliged to get an order in 
writing from M r Beckford for them. 

Some days past I was favour'd with a letter from 
M r Bowdoin relative to a packet sent by Capt. Bryant, 
containing a duplicate of your letter to Lord Hillsborough, 
with other papers and proofs. M r Bowdoin's letter 
renews in your name the proposal of publication. When 
I consider that all Gov r Bernard's letters, formerly, 
lately, & now sent, were read in both Houses of Parlia- 
ment, the public justification of the Council appears very 
desirable ; but after considering this matter as well as 
my present hurry & the shortness of the time will per- 
mit, the present publication of your late letter, tho' it 
contains so notable a defence of the Council, does not 
appear to me advisable, 1. Because this letter now lyes 
before the King, and an appeal to the people in that case 
is improper ; 2. In consequence of your having only par- 
tial information, it contains only a partial defence ; 3. 
All, or most, of the principal persons, especially those 
who are likely to favour your cause, are dispersed & gone, 
and the freshness of a publication, made in season before 
the subsequent consideration of the subject matter of it 
by government, is frequently serviceable. On your re- 
ceiving the copies now sent you will, I presume, with the 
aid of your other knowledge of facts, well understand the 


motives, begining, & progress of those proceedings which 
have brought the Province into so strange & unhappy a 
condition. A removal of all unjust impressions, preju- 
dicial to its Council, magistrates, & inhabitants, wou'd be 
very beneficial, if obtainable, and I beg leave to submit 
to the consideration of those who are able to make it, the 
utility of a plain, clear, distinct & candid narrative of all 
the material facts placed in their natural order, attended 
with decent and pertinent observations, & a constant 
regard for future as well as past proceedings. I do not 
mean that the defence of the Council shou'd, in my poor 
opinion, be mingled with other defences & matters, nor 
pretend to be a competent judge in this business; and, 
indeed, the idea of an useful narrative arising in my mind 
while writing I have hastily inserted it, without consider- 
ing, as I ought, whether there be time sufficient to form, 
complete, and publish it before the next session. 

I hope Smith & Scott will both arrive safe; and in that 
case be pleased to let the selectmen of Boston have the 
authentic copies of those letters which iihediately concern 
them & the town, it being impossible to get other authen- 
tic copies in season for their use, being so straiten'd in 
time that I shall not be able to read any of the fresh 
copies now sent. 

It is intended that the livery of London shall in conion 
hall to-morrow determine upon a petition to his Majesty, 
and having seen parts of two several draughts, each 
express'd a regard for the welfare of the colon 8 , but the 
third which is settled by the comittee makes, I think, the 
most favorable ment n of them, such part as relates to 
them having been read to me }^esterday by the favour of 
a gentleman who has the care of it. I am with the 
greatest respect, Gentlemen, 

Y r most obed fc & most humble servant. 

W. Boll an. 

The Hon blk Sam l Danforth, Esq h , & others. 

1769.] JOHN ERVING. 149 


Boston, July 26, 1769. 

William Bollan, Esq. : Sir, — Your letter to M r 
Danforth of the 6 th of May was rec d yesterday, & for the 
intelligence contained in it the Council are obliged to 
you. The motion you refer to for considering & repeal- 
ing the last American act from what you was informed 
concerning it, that it was Ministerial at bottom, & from 
other information we have just had, was probably designed 
to make the Americans believe that a repeal is really 
intended at the next session of Parliament, and in con- 
firmation of this it is said the Ministry have written 
circulatory letters to the respective Governors of the 
Colonies with directions to make such intention publicly 
known. But as we are happily apprized of their views 
in doing this, it will fail of working the effect they hope 
for from it, namely, to induce the merchants here to set 
aside the agreement with regard to non-importation from 
Great Britain. By this conveyance you will have enclosed 
to you the vote of the Council appointing you their agent 
in G. Britain in behalf of the Province. The vote is 
attested by the Deputy Secretary, the Secretary himself 
being gone to New York. The Council were in hopes 
you would have been appointed by the whole Court, and 
in expectation of it postponed their choice till a day or 
two before the prorogation of the Court, which happened 
the 15 th instant. The House of Representatives were 
much divided in their sentiments about an agent, many 
of them were for not appointing any agent, and were 
probably influenced thereto by private letters from the 
gentleman you hint at as being a closet companion of 

* John Erving, born at Kirkwall, in the Orkneys, in 1690, came to this country a poor 
sailor-boy about 1706; was afterward a captain in the merchant service, and subsequently 
the richest merchant in New England. He sat in the Council of Massachusetts from 1754 
to 1774, and died in Boston in 1786, aged 96. His eldest son, John Erving, Jr., was a 
Mandamus Councillor and Loyalist refugee. — Eds. 


L II . But a majority finally voted to continue 

M r De Berdt as the agent for the House. The Governor 
& the Assembly have had no good agreement this session, 
and, in order to put it [out?] of their power to give to 
Ministry & the Parliament a full state of the Province to 
be considered with his own, he has prorogued the Court 
to the 10 th of next January, by which means, as he is 
just about sailing for England, he expects to be there at 
least six months before the Assembly can do any thing 
further to counter-plot him in his machinations against 
the Province. The Council request the favor you will 
please to give your attention to all his motions & pro- 
ceedings that so the Province may not suffer by his repre- 
sentations before they can be notified & heard upon the 
subject matter of them. This prorogation has also put it 
out of the power of the Council, at least for six months, 
to endeavour to effect a junction of the two agents, if 
they should not be able to get you appointed the sole 
agent for the Province. 

In the Council's letter of the 15 th of April they re- 
quested you to procure and send them authenticated 
copies of Governor Bernard's letters, &c, laid before 
Parliament. They renew the same request, and pray 
you also to procure some other letters of his ; to describe 
which it is necessary you should be informed that, in the 
last commission constituting a Court of Vice Admiralty, 
for the trial of piracies, &c, the Council of this Province 
is not named, notwithstanding by all former commissions 
they made a part of that Court. Governor Bernard's 
letters to the Ministry, dated between June, 1761, and 
February, 1762, are apprehended to be the occasion of 
this. The Governor took offence at the Council's joining 
with the House in June, 1761, in measures for recovering 
the Province's part of certain seizures condemned by the 
Court of Admiralty ; and thereupon, as there is reason to 
think, characterized the Council in said letters as inimical to 

1769. J THOMAS WHATELY. 151 

the said Court of Admiralty. And after the demise of the 
late King, in October, 1761, when a new commission was 
necessary for such trials as aforesaid, represented it as 
improper that the Council of this Province should consti- 
tute any part of the new Court. The Council are very 
desirous of obtaining a copy of his said letters ; and they 
earnestly pray the favor that you would procure a copy 
of them, which are very probably dated between June, 
1761, and February, 1762, of which last date the commis- 
sion is. 

You have herewith a printed copy of the Council's 
letters to Lord Hillsboro', with the proceedings referd to 
in them. Your petition to the House of Commons, so 
well written & of so great importance to Americans, was 
tho't necessary to be printed with them.* 

In behalf of Com tee of Council, I am with great re- 
spect, S r , 

Y r most obed fc hbl. serv fc . 

John Erving. 


London, 27 th July, 1769. 

Dear Sir, — I am ashamed of so old a date as 4 th 
Nov r to your letter, in which you gave me hopes of seeing 
you soon here, but I have since heard nothing more of it, 
& I know so little of the present administration that I 
can neither give you intelligence of their designs, nor 
assistance in obtaining your request.! I only know that 

* The petition of Mr. Bollan to the House of Commons is printed in The Boston Gazette, 
April 17, 1769. It is also in the appendix to a pamphlet, printed in the same year by Edes 
& Gill, entitled "Letters to the Right Honorable the Earl of Hillsborough," &c. — Eds. 

f In a letter to Earl Temple, dated Sept. 22, 1769, Mr. Whately writes,— "I find 
M r John Temple is coming home; his business is partly to answer the charge now made in 
form against him by the other Commissioners for favoring the popular party, and partly to 
charge them, together with the Governor, with insolence, indiscretion, and perhaps abuse of 
their powers." (See Grenville Papers, vol. iv. p. 460.) Mr. Temple, however, did not go 
to England until more than a year afterward. (See letter to Whately, Dec. 30, 1770, post, 


they affect to make a shew of vigorous measures concern- 
ing America. In some points they will not chuse, 
in others they will not dare, to give way ; & my idea is 
that so long as they continue, they will do as they 
have hitherto done, & keep y e affair just where it is, 
without much exertion or much concession. In all pro- 
bability, however, they will not continue long ; y e crisis 
of our affairs & y e discontents of y e people will soon make 
the establishment of a more able administration necessary. 
Your people are poor politicians, in exulting as they do in 
our disorders, & not seeing that from thence results the 
necessity for a government equal in firmness & stability 
to the occasion. The notice taken of your supposed 
grievances in the petitions of London & Middlesex is as 
little matter of triumph, for you will not, I believe, see y e 

p. 247.) In a memorial to the Lords of the Treasury, dated Feb. 7, 1772, he says he had 
" humbly solicited no less than thirteen times for leave to come home to England . . . 
Thus after persevering more than three years in the most disagreeable & unhappy situation, 
observing at the same time the business of the revenue & (as he apprehended) the revenue 
itself going fast to ruin & destruction, he ventured to come home without leave, trusting 
entirely to your Lordships 1 candor & humanity for so doing, seeing that M r Robinson, a 
brother Commissioner, & Mr Hallowell, an inferior officer, had before done the like with 
impunity." On his arrival he " had the mortification to hear that he had been some months 
superceded in the American Commission by the same M r Hallowell." Soon afterward he had 
an interview with Lord North, " who discovered a fair disposition for repairing the injury 
your memorialist had sustained both in his character & fortune." Lately he "had the 
honor of being appointed Surveyor General of the Customs in England, with £300 a year 
over & above the salary established, in which station (though a degradation in rank) he 
means to exert his utmost to approve himself to your Lordships for further favor when a 
vacancy may happen at either the English or Irish Board of Revenue." And he prayed 
for some compensation for his losses and expense attending the presentation of his " truely 
unfortunate case," which amounted to " near a thousand pounds of his private fortune, over 
& above the charges of his voyage & the loss he must unavoidably sustain in the disposal 
of his house, furniture, slaves, horses, carriages, & by the sudden & unexpected removal of 
himself, & family " from America. It should be added that a year before the earliest of 
the applications referred to in the foregoing extract, — in the summer of 1767, — Mr. Temple 
had asked leave to go to England for the recovery of his health, which, he says, in a letter 
dated Jan. 25, 1708, "was graciously granted me, and with the most pleasing additional 
circumstance, that of full approbation of my past services, not only of the Board of Customs 
in England, but of the then Lords Commiss 1 " 6 of the Treasury themselves." When he was 
about to sail, he learned that it was the intention of the government to establish a Board of 
Customs in America, in consequence of which he determined to postpone his proposed 
visit to England, in order to be on the spot when the newly appointed Commissioners 
should enter on the discharge of their duties, and to furnish them with all the information 
he could give. Of this Board he was made a member; but for some reason his renewed 
applications for leave to go to England were not favorably received. — Eds. 

1709.] JOHN ERVING. 153 

example follow'd, but y e petitions of the counties will in 
general omit the pretensions of the Colonies. That of 
Surry, the only one which has yet been prepared, is silent 
on y e subject. As to your associations against import- 
ation, they can have little effect. Your merchants will 
not keep to them. Every one would suffer if they did for 
want of meer necessaries, & now that the greatest parade 
is making about them our manufacturers feel from the 
demand that your agreements are evaded. This is, I 
think, y e general state of publick affairs between us. As 
to private concerns I have already written to your brother 
by M r Venner my sentiments upon them. I cannot 
dissemble that your differences with the officers of y e 
Crown are circumstances not in your favour, & in these 
times, & in your situation, you must suffer while such 
appearances are against you. I have, you know, always 
regretted your alienation from those officers. I always 
shall think it unfortunate for you, & you must excuse me 
for continually expressing my concern about it. I am, 
dear Sir, 

Your most obedient, humble servant. 

Thomas Whatelt. 

The Hon ble Mr. Temple. 


Boston, August 19, 1769. 

W M Bollan, Esq r : S R , — This only serves to acknowl- 
edge the rec* of y r two favors of the 21 st & 23 d of June to 
M r Danforth & others, accompanied with the copies of 
Gov r Bernard's, &c, letters & the memorials of the Corn" 
of the Customs, for all which we are very much obliged to 
you. As many of the letters affect the character of the 
town of Boston, they will be, agreable to your desire, 
comunicated to the selectmen of the town. On the 


subject of those letters & memorials you will probably 

hear further from the gentlemen to whom your letters 

are directed, in whose behalf I am, very respectfully, S r , 

Y r most obed fc hble. serv\ 

John Ervjng. 


Fludyer Street, Westm b , Oct r 2 d , 1769. 

Sir, — After the tedious confinement necessary for 
writing the Free Briton's Memorial,* taking care of its 
publication, & puting the Council's Defence into the pro- 
per course of printing, in order to be publish'd at the best 
season, I went out of town on the 24 th of Aug* & returning 
on the 20 th ult mo , in consequence of M r Erving's letter of 
the 26 th of July, I proceeded to take care of the printing, 
tho' M r Beckford in the country & S r Geo. Saville after- 
wards in town told me that in all probability the Parlia- 
ment would not sit til after Christmas, with intent to 
publish it some short time before their meeting, but on 
the morning of the 28 th one of the principal public papers 
contain'd an advertisement that the whole publication 
printed at Boston was reprinted here, & wou'd be published 
the next morning. The close application necessary to con- 
sider a constitutional question put me the day before by a 
gentleman of consequence, one of your principal friends 
who lately came to town, with some subsequent matters, 
employ'd my time so that I knew nothing of this advertise- 
ment til ten o'clock in the ev'ning. Early next morning 
I went to M r Almon, the publisher, who told me upon 
enquiry that the author of this publication was a gentle- 

* This was a quarto pamphlet of about sixty pages, published anonymously under the 
title of "The Free Briton's Supplemental Memorial to the Electors of the Members of the 
British Parliament; wherein the Origin of Parliaments in Europe, and other interesting 
Matters, are considered." It is mainly an attack on the ministry of the Duke of Grafton, 
on account of their action in regard to the Middlesex election, and only incidentally refers 
to the dispute with the Colonies. — Eds. 

1769.] SAMUEL HOOD. 155 

man of character & fortune, who sustain'd no public 
office, but was a great friend of the Colonies, and a 
particular friend of mine, that on seeing my name in the 
appendix, he came to my lodgings for directions how to 
write to me in the country before he shou'd go on to 
publish, but my clerk not being in the way he cou'd get 
no information herein, & thro' the great neglect of an 
inferiour servant, he had none ; and that several others 
having copies which came from Boston, he had dispatch'd 
the publication in order to prevent their making it. This 
unlucky proceeding vexed me, 1 st , because my intended 
publication would in the present state of this kingdom 
have been more beneficial, as your friend aforementioned 
& M r Almon himself agreed ; 2, because I had for some 
time purposed to publish apart my own petition, together 
with a short preceding essay, but this design is now 
defeated. The misfortune is not great, and I shall 
endeavour to remedy it as far as may be. I am, with 
the greatest respect for the Honourable the Council, Sir, 
Your most obedient & most humble servant. 

The Hon ble Sam l Danforth, Esq e . 


Many thanks, dear Sir, for your very obliging and 
also for the pamplet ; I hope and trust, and I flatter 
myself with some reason, that all will be well in a 
little while, and that the present breach will bring 
forward most perfect and unalterable affection, between 

* Samuel Hood, one of the most distinguished of the British naval commanders in the 
last century, was born at Thorncombe, in Devonshire, Dec. 12, 1724, and died at Bath, Jan. 
27, 1816. For his services against the French during the war of our Revolution he was 
raised to the peerage, and for his still more conspicuous exploits during the wars of the 
French Revolution he was created Viscount Hood See Rose's Biographical Dictionary, 
pp. 360, 361; Dictionary of National Biography, vol. xxvii. pp. 263-270.— Eds. 


Great Britain and the Colonies, in spite of the inflam- 
matory publications the papers are still full of, which 
can serve no other end, than to keep the unhappy fer- 
ment alive ; would it not therefore be highly praise- 
worthy, in the principal gentlemen to unite, and most 
cordially endeavour to put a stop to such rancorous 
abuse that appears in almost every print ? I perceive 
an attempt at it against me could not be withheld by 
some one, and though I guess the man, I wish not to 
know him ; if it will answer any good purpose to the 
Province I hope to see it continued, and I promise you 
to take not the least notice of whatever is published in 
such a way, nor shall the quantity or quality of it 
in any degree slacken my zeal for promoting, to the 
utmost of my feeble abilities, a happy reconciliation 
between the parent country and America. 

I am sorry Mrs. Bowdoin has been so alarmed about 
the small-pox, and hope eer this her fears are at an end 
and that she is returned to her own house. Mrs. Hood 
joins me in best compliments and warmest wishes to 
her & you, and the several branches of the family, par- 
ticularly the head of Mrs. Bowdoin's, and I beg you 
will believe me with great truth & esteem, dear Sir, 

Your most obedient humble Servant. 

Sam. Hood. 

Halifax, Oct? 8^ 1769 

P. S. As soon as the Sept r mail arrives the Hope 
schooner will be dispatched to me, and in three days 
after she comes here, I shall send her to England. If 
she can be usefull to you, I shall be happy in giving you 
this information. 

1769.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 157 


Boston, Dec r . 5, 1769. 

Dear Sir, — I have the pleasure of your letter of 
y e 27 th June, & observe you staid in town to be present 
at the Council Chamber when the hearing of the Ken- 
nebec Company's appeal comes on. It is some time 
since the C° has had a line from M r Goostrey, by w ch 
means they are uninformed of the issue of the appeal, 
or indeed whether it has yet had a hearing. When you 
see him, please to be so good as to let him know it will 
give the C° pleasure to hear from him, and to be informed 
what progress is made in the appeal, and, if not already, 
when 'tis likely to come to an issue. What you mention 
about the legality of the appeal being founded on the 
action's being personal, makes me recollect it was 
originally a personal action, and intended to be so to 
avoid the objection arising from the opinion that the 
Charter did not allow of appeals in real actions ; but 
it was said at the same time that in fact it did allow 
of such appeals. However that may be, I am very glad 
y e appeal stands clear 'of any objection from the Charter, 
as I would not in my own case, and should be sorry 
the Company should in theirs, do any thing inconsistent 
with the rights of the Charter. 

The unkind, not to say contemptuous, reception Amer- 
ican petitions have met with from Parliament has effect- 
ually discouraged our Assembly from petitioning further, 
and all the rhetoric Ministry can command, if used for 
the purpose, will never persuade them to it. Their idea 
seems to correspond with yours, that it is best to let 
Ministry take their own way, that the absurdity of 
it may expose them, and necessitate a change of meas- 
ures. There are many considerate people here who think 
a change of measures, by which they mean a repeal, 
either in whole or in part of the several acts for raising 


a revenue in America, would be a real detriment to 
America, as those acts have raised a spirit of ceconomy, 
industry and invention w ch have already produced happy 
effects, and have demonstrated our capacity of being 
less dependent on British produce & manufactures than 
was ever before apprehended. This spirit seems likely 
to continue as long as those acts ; but it may probably 
abate on the rescinding of them, though it is greatly 
to be wished even by the friends of Great Britain that 
that spirit may continue, and the true policy would 
be to direct it to objects that would not interfere with 
but be beneficial to her manufactures. With regard 
to American manufactures, tho' the progress of them 
has not been so rapid as the warm sons of liberty has 
represented on the one hand, nor so small & diminutive 
as ministerial sycophants have represented on the other, 
I can assure you it has been considerable and is growing, 
and all you can do on your side of the water, except 
the restoring things to their old course, will but increase 
it. Ministry by this time know this is not a country 
from which revenue can be raised, and if the revenue 
acts are continued, they will also know that it is a 
country that can manufacture for themselves. But 
perhaps they prefer the wisdom derived from exper- 
ience. Lord Hillsborough's last circular letter has been 
as unsuccessful as his former ; the declaration in it 
that Ministry would procure the repeal of the duties 
on paper, glass, & colors, instead of causing a relaxation 
of the agreement for non-importation, has confirmed 
it. It has been agreed anew by the merch ts of this 
and most of the Colonies that they will not import 
till the act of Parliament last made be wholly repealed ; 
and it has been and is now negotiating not to import 
till the revenue acts shall be repealed. 

Since I had the pleasure of writing you last, Gov r 
Bernard, you know, has met the Assembly, the transac- 

1769.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 159 

tions of which the newspapers have informed you. He 
gave me my quietus by his negative. # When he prorogued 
the Court last June, he did it to so distant a time as 
Jan ry , partly to prevent (as long as he could) the filling 
up the seats he had vacated at Council, but especially 
to prevent the Assembly doing anything further against 
himself. We have had two parcels of his letters to 
Ministry, with other letters, the same that were laid 
before Parliament, published here. With the first, and 
in answer to them, were letters from the Council to 
L d Hillsboro. In answer to the last, the Town of 
Boston has published an Appeal to the Public. All 
these papers have been sent to you. Against the authors 
of those letters laid before Parliament, viz., Gov r Bernard, 
Gen 1 Gage, the Comiss rs of the Customs, the Collector 
& Comptroller, the Town made complaint to the Grand 
Jury, who have found bills against them which have been 
just laid before the Superior Court now sitting here. 

Two regiments of our new conservators of the peace 
remain here ; their main guard is still posted where 
it was, directly opposite to the centre door of the 
Court House. The posting troops in the town, not 
required by the civil magistrates, and contrary to the 
mind not only of the Town, but of the whole Province, 
occasioned the General Court to refuse doing business 
in town, and it is probable they will continue in the 
same disposition at the next session. To keep the troops 
here and eke the Comiss rs who applied for them, and 
who have taken a great deal of pains, very needlessly 
and very impertinently, to make themselves obnoxious, 
can serve no other purpose than to irritate and keep 
up the spirit of discontent ; unless Ministry still look 

* On the first day of the session of the House of Representatives, which began May 31, 
1769, twenty-eight Councillors were duly chosen ; Governor Bernard negatived eleven of 
them, including William Brattle, James Bowdoin, John Hancock, Artemas Ward, and 
James Otis. Among those to whose election he consented were Samuel Danforth, John 
Erving, and Samuel Dexter. — Eds. 


on an American revenue as an object worth pursuit, 
and that those are the proper means of securing it, in 
both which, if they have not already, they will probably 
find themselves mistaken, notwithstanding; the sugges- 
tions and inculcations of a certain Baronet, to whom, 
it is believed, the nation & Colonies are principally 
obliged for the disunion & disaffection that at present 
unhappily subsist between them. 

However worthy of approbation this may be, it is 
said his forcing the Assembly to refuse quartering the 
troops, & to express themselves so fully & plainly on 
that subject, is a matter for which Ministry does not 
thank him. The affair of agency stands disagreably. 
The two houses had it some time under consideration 
for the purpose of joining together in it. But at length 
each chose its own agent ; the Council M r Bollan, & the 
House M r Deberdt. There is talk of a coalition at the 
next session, and appointing both by the whole Court. 
But whether this will take place is doubtful, at least. 
If any thing should turn up worth comunicating, I will 
comunicate it, & am, with great respect, S r , 

Y r most obed*, &c. 

James Bowdoin. 


Dear Sir, — I give you many thanks for your very 
obliging letter of the 4 th past, which I duely rec'd, and 
am sorry you have been deprived of the use of your pen 
by a complaint in your eyes. If my wishes are of any 
avail you and yours now enjoy all imaginable health, with 
every other blessing of life, that sincerity can suggest. 

Calumny, my dear Sir, is the mark of envy in little 
narrow minds, and I hope never to want a Christian's 
share of it ; I am conscious of the rectitude of my own 
actions and am proof against the attack of malignant 


people. I can make a pretty good guess at the author 
of a late publication in Edes & Gill,* but am so little 
disturbed at it, that I do not desire to know for certain 
who he is, nor would I give him a sixpence to prevent 
his filling a page of abuse of me in every paper, for 
a year to come. It is with much pleasure I acquaint 
you, and I think with some degree of authority, that 
a plan will soon come forth, so full of moderation, as 
well as attention to America, that I flatter myself the 
sensible part of his Majesty's subjects in the several 
Colonies will be satisfied. It is not possible to content 
the whole, for some minds are not to be satisfied and 
to whom the more you grant the more will be demanded ; 
but I hope & trust the whole continent will be easy & 
happy, before the end of the present year. 

Mrs Hood begs her best compliments may be made 
acceptable to Mrs. Bowdoin, and all of her connection 
she has the pleasure to know, and I entreat you will 
remember me to Cap* Erving. I am dear Sir, with great 
regard & esteem, 

Your most obedient and very humble Servant. 

Sam. Hood. 

Halifax, Jan? 17 th 1770. 
James Bowdoin Esq? 

March, 1770. 

to the hon ble , the comons of great britain in parliament 

The petition of William Bollan, Esqf [appointed by the 
Council of the Province of Massachusetts Bay, agent for 
them and the Province in Great Britain.] t 

* The reference is to a long letter in the Boston Gazette, Dec. 25, 1769, signed Phila- 
delphos, containing extracts from Commodore Hood's letters to the Secretary of the 
Admiralty. — Eds. 

t The words within the brackets have been stricken out by drawing aline through them. 
— Eds. 



Most humbly sheweth, — That in his present Majesty's 
reign measures have been devised & laws made for raising 
a revenue out of American comerce, the natural augmen- 
tation whereof, thus prevented, would have caused a con- 
tinual growing consumption of British manufactures with 
a constant encrease of British navigation, the source of 
their naval power ; would in circuit have enrich'd the King 
& kingdom far more by consent than they could be by any 
compulsion; would have preserved in its former full 
strength that cordial union of the British subjects residing 
in Britain & the Colonies which is apparently necessary 
to their mutual & lasting welfare ; and would moreover 
have augmented the abilities of the British Americans, 
and given fresh spirit to their laudable inclination to 
venture their lives & fortunes against the public enemies 
when they shall renew their hostilities, which in point of 
difficulty & danger may equal, or exceed, those that were 
in the late war so happily surmounted, and which without 
question, tho' with uncertain pace, are daily approaching. 

That amongst other measures even British manufactures 
have, contrary to the plainest principle of comerce, been 
made the subjects of taxation when imported into the 

That regulations of American comerce have been sub- 
jected to military execution, fiter to extirpate than to 
regulate, preserve & encrease trade, which is in its nature 
so tender that touch it with a sword & it dies. 

That the offenses, accusations, & litigations relative to 
the several laws enacted touching the American trade & 
revenue, have been subjected to civil adjudication incom- 
patible with the English constitution and pregnant with 
hardships exceeding all example. 

That the King's causing such monies to be applied out 
of certain American revenues as he shall think proper or 
necessary for defraying the charges of administring justice 
and supporting civil government within all or any of the 


Colonies would be such a seizure of their imediate civil 
government into the King's hands as would be attended 
with unspeakable difficulties and hardships, wou'd subvert 
fro tanto the proper constitution of the Colonies, which 
are in their nature & by their institution distinct members 
of the comonwealth, established by the wisdom of former 
ages, and wou'd be inconsistent with the Charter granted 
to the s d Province of Massachusetts Bay by their Majesties, 
King William & Queen Mary. 

That the junction of the Colonies for the purpose of 
civil government is manifestly repugnant to that standing 
policy of their severance whereby they have been so well 
governed from the time of their existence. 

That the application of monies raised in a Colony which 
defrays all the proper & necessary charges of administring 
justice & supporting civil government there, to pay the 
charges of such administration & support in any other 
Colony neglecting its duty in this behalf, would be a plain 
departure from the permanent principle of natural justice. 

That the new system of defending, protecting, & secur- 
ing the Colonies devised & practised by his Majesty's 
Ministers is likewise improvident, oppressive & dangerous 
to the kingdom & the Colonies. 

That in consequence of the preceding & other ministerial 
measures, the British manufactures, trade, & navigation 
have been discouraged, & British America reduced from a 
state of quiet, with chearful & profitable obedience, to a 
state of great distress & dangerous insatisfaction. 

That the errors & improvidence of Ministers, with the 
hostile designs & proceedings of France to undermine the 
British American dominion, trade, & fishery, brought on 
the late expensive & dangerous war, and British America 
is now in consequence of the errors & improvidence of his 
Majesty's Ministers brought into a state of invitation of 
foreign war. 

Wherefore your petitioner humbly prays that he may 


be heard before this Honourable House, in order that he 
may defend the rights & interest of the Province afore- 
said, and give such necessary information as this or the 
late Parliament have not received, whereby he humbly 
hopes this Honourable House will be in some degree assisted 
in taking those salutary measures which the prosperity & 
safety of the kingdom & the Colonies at this interesting 
conjuncture require. 



Fludyer Street, March 6 th , 1770. 

Sir, — Yesterday the Lord Mayor presented to the 
House of Coiilons my petition as agent for the Council & 
the Province, complaining of the new system of revenue & 
government so far introduced with respect to the Colonies, 
and praying to be heard in person. Upon reading it, with 
my authority from the Council, the latter being objected 
to as insufficient, it was urged that the Council alone cou'd 
not appoint any such agent, more especially when the 
House of Representatives was sitting, and this being the 
sense of the House, the necessity of receiving all useful 
information, notwithstanding any informality of proceed- 
ing abroad, was then strenuously contended for, and at 
length, the chief minister consenting, the House agreed to 
receive my petition, upon striking out such part as related 
to the agency; whereupon the Lord Mayor iihediately 
came out to me with the petition in his hand, acquainted 
me with the matter, and that upon making the proposed 
alteration, I should be called into the House, to which of 
necessity I consented, and his Lordship, with my agree- 
ment, having struck his pen thro' the words relating to 
the agency, he directly returned, and I expected to be very 

1770.] WILLIAM BOLL AN. 165 

soon called in, but debates arising and continuing I staid 
waiting about seven hours, when the House coming to a 
division between eleven and twelve they brake up without 
calling me in, and my petition now lies upon the table. 
The inclosed copy of the petition with the printed votes 
will shew how it stood before the alteration made, and 
how it now stands. 

M r De Berdt having on the 13 th of Jan ry told me he 
wou'd concur in any measure proper for promoting the 
Province service, on the 15 th I waited on him again, and 
proposed our joining in a petition to the House of Coinons, 
and shewed him the draught I had prepared. After read- 
ing it he declined joining with me, but said he wou'd back 
my petition with one of his own, to be heard by counsel, 
since which I have heard nothing from him. 

The rights & interests of America seem rather to be 
rising, but as they partake of the wondrous difficulties of 
the times, it is certain their preservation and advancement 
require the best defence. I write with much greater hurry 
than is desirable, and am, with the greatest respect for 
the Hon ble the Council, Sir, 

Your most obedient and most humble servant. 


The Hon ble Sam l Danforth, Esq? 


Fludyer Street, March 8 th , 1770. 

Sir, — Having lately written in haste I did not mention 
the observation of some of your principal friends in the 
House of Comons, that the authority given me was not 
only deficient, being given me by the Council alone, but 
that the expression was also improper, in empowering me 
to appear & transact at the Court of Great Britain all 
matters which concern them or the Province, being, they 


said, language more fit for foreign princes or states than 
for a Colony deputing a person to represent them; to 
which it is necessary to add that an authority to appear 
at the Court of Great Britain doth not in strictness author- 
ize the party appointed to appear for his constituents in 
the several Houses of Parliament. It is needless to say 
that in these times the best authority is one of the requi- 
sites necessary to make the best defence in behalf of the 
Province, when open & powerful adversaries & their 
numerous abetters unite with some of your pretended 
friends to your prejudice. In the session comenced in the 
year 1755, when a matter was depending in Parliament 
which nearly concerned the welfare of the Province, my 
authority was called for by some of the members ; where- 
upon one of your chief friends came out of the House & 
acquainted me with the necessity of my producing a suf- 
ficient authority ; upon which I instantly gave him a 
power I had received that very day, a copy whereof you 
receive inclosed, having no time to state it, which power 
being carried in was agreed to be sufficient. But then my 
instructions were call'd for ; whereupon the same member 
came out to me for them, to which I answer'd, that in- 
structions in their nature related only to the parties giving 
& receiving them, and were oft times improper for publi- 
cation, and that the power given to appear for the Province 
was not conditional or dependent on the instructions, 
which only directed the conduct of the person empower'd, 
and that this point had been so determined by the King 
in Council in a great cause between the King & the Prov- 
ince. This answer being carried in, all objection ceased. 
I am with the greatest respect for the Hon bIe the Council, 

Your most obedient & most humble servant. 

The Hox ble Sam* Danforth, Esq*. 

1770.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 167 


Boston, Mar. 27, 1770. 

S R , — The last letter sent you in the name and in con- 
sequence of the appointment of the Council was dated the 
— Jan y last, since which the Gen 1 Court, pursuant to a 
ministerial mandate, has been prorogued by the L* Gov r 
to Cambridge where it has been sitting since the 15 th in- 
stant. This the two Houses (to say nothing of the great 
inconveniencies, to which they are thereby subjected) deem 
an infringement upon one of the rights of the Charter, 
which, after ordaining that there shall [be] held & kept a 
Gen 1 C fc every y r in May, vests the Governor for the time 
being with the whole power of convening, proroguing, and 
dissolving the said Court without any reference to instruc- 
tions from the Crown whatever ; and not only without 
such reference, but in terms whereby the Crown has given 
up all pretentions to a right of giving such instructions. 
What has passed between the L* Gov r and the two Houses 
on this subject will be sent you enclosed herewith. 

The principal thing which we think it necessary you 
should be fully informed of at this time is the horrid mas- 
sacre which happened here on the evening of the 5 th instant, 
when eleven of his Maj ty ' s subjects were killed by a party of 
soldiers of the 29 th regiment, their leader being Capt. Pres- 
ton. The soldiers in general, and particularly of this regi- 
ment, have behaved with great insolence and have comitted 
many abuses upon the inhabitants of the town, for which 
it were to be wished they had been duly punished when 
brought before our Courts of Justice. But the affair 
which more imediately was introductory to the said mas- 
sacre was a quarrel between some soldiers of the 29 th regi- 
ment and the ropemakers at M r Gray's rope walk. In the 
contest the soldiers were worsted, and this reflecting, as 
they thought, on honor of the regiment, there was a gen 1 
combination among them to take vengeance on the town 


indiscriminately. Of such a combination there is satisfac- 
tory proof, and in consequence of that combination there 
was on the evening of the 5 th instant a great number of 
abuses committed by the soldiers on the inhabitants in vari- 
ous parts of the town ; and being carried to such excess 
by one party a bell at y e head of King Street was rung as 
for fire, which brot the neighbouring inhabitants into the 
street, and as King Street w T as the last scene of that party's 
exploits, a number of people collected there, about which 
time the centry at the Custom House without any affront 
offered to him (as it is affirmed) abused a boy by striking 
him a severe blow with his gun. This drew a number of 
persons round the boy near the Custom House, and occa- 
sioned some snow balls to be thrown at the centry, who 
hereupon knocked violently at the Custom House, and 
speaking with somebody that came to the door, there went 
from thence two persons to the main guardhouse (opposite to 
the Court House) and procured Capt. Preston with a party 
of soldiers to go to the centry, who (it w r as represented) 
was in danger. Capt. Preston hereupon went from the 
guard house with a party of about eight men, who passed 
roughly thro the people and pushed some with their 
bayonets, till they were posted near the Custom House. 
This was resented by some of the people by throwing a 
few snowballs ; soon after which the said party fired, not 
all together, but deliberately, by which means eleven per- 
sons were killed and wounded, as above mentioned. There 
are depositions which mention that several guns were fired 
from the Custom House, and this matter is now enquiring 
into. Soon after the firing the main body of the 29th 
regiment appeared in arms in King Street, and were 
drawn up between the Court House and main guardhouse, 
and in such posture as plainly manifested a disposition to 
commit a further massacre, but by the good hand of 
Providence were prevented. 

The foregoing is a short and general account of this 

1770.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 169 

unhappy affair. The particulars of it are contained in a 
Narrative just printed, with depositions annexed to it, one 
of which will be sent to you by the Com tee of the Town. 
There is great reason to apprehend that there have been 
depositions taken in this affair by the procurement of the 
disturbers of the peace and union which ought to subsist 
between Great Britain and the Colonies, — depositions in- 
tended to make the town the faulty cause of that mas- 
sacre, and to make it believed that the Custom House was 
then in danger of being pillaged. But if any such deposi- 
tions have been sent home, the deposers have perjured 
themselves ; there not being the least foundation for such 
a thing to be suspected, much less to be made the subject 
of a deposition. The Council desire you, and you are 
hereby instructed, to use your best endeavors to procure 
copies of those depositions (if any such there be) and 
transmit them as soon as may be, and in the mean time 
to ward off any ill impressions which such depositions are 
calculated to make to the disadvantage of the town in 
particular and the Province in general. 

The longer continuance of the troops in town being ab- 
solutely inconsistent with the safety of the inhabitants, 
the Council unanimously advised the L* Governor to order 
the troops from the town to the barracks at Castle Island, 
and in consequence of that advice the commanding officer, 
Col Dalrymple, has removed them all thither. The pro- 
ceedings of Council in this matter are sent to you herewith. 
You will use your utmost endeavors that those troops be 
ordered by his Majesty to be removed out of the Province, 
and that no more troops be sent hither to [be] quartered 
in the Province. 



London, 7 th Ap., 1770. 
Dear Sir, — I woud have done myself the pleasure of 
writting you by a vessell that saild for Boston last month, 
but was dissapointed by a gentleman who promised to 
give me a day's notice, but forgot it. I likewise thought 
of writting you after my arivall here, but as I had not 
an oppertunity of seeing or conversing with any who coud 
give me information, the Ministers being all in the coun- 
trey, I thought it better to defer it till I coud speak with 
them & know somewhat of their intentions. I have had 
many conversations with some of the Ministers on the 
state of America, & with truth & integrity I can say 
that I have endeavord all in my power to represent per- 
sons & things in their just light, to clear up prejudices, 
& to shew where the remedy lay, and how to bring 
matters to a state of peace & concord ; this, I give you 
my honor, I did with as much sincerity & regard for one 
side the Atlantick as the other; and in justice to those I 
conversd with I must do them the justice to say that I 
found them all as willing & desirous to promote that end 
as ever you & I was on any occasion or conversation. 
With some I enterd into all the particulars which you & 
I had talk'd of, & found a great willingness to comply in 
every article. I mean that the regulation of commerce 
shoud be the ground, & I may say the only ground, of any 
tax that remaind ; further than the molosses, wine, & 
sugar, nothing to be thought of, & those to be considerd 

* Colonel, afterward Major-General, Alexander Mackay, arrived in Boston, with the 
troops from Ireland, in November, 17G8, being at that time in command of the G5th Regi- 
ment. He returned to England in August, 1769. " Last Saturday General Mackay sailed 
for London in the Brigantine commanded by Capt. Bartlett," says the Boston Evening- 
Post of Aug. 21, 17G9. u Though the sending the Troops in this Town, considering the 
Errand they came on, was a Measure not founded in Reason, and as disgustful as unreason- 
able: Justice, however, requires us to say, That General Afackay's Command of the Troops 
has given universal Satisfaction; and with Pleasure we take this Opportunity to acknowl- 
edge his Merit, both as a Gentleman and an Officer." — Eds. 


on fair & just grounds. You may say, how comes it then 
that matters have stopt now with only repealing the 
dutys on glass, painters' colors, &c, & not tea ? I will 
answer you candidly in the way I ever did, that it is owing 
to the measures taken by yourselves, & the extension of 
the resolutions made at your publick meetings after I left 
you, where it was resolved that no importation of British 
goods shoud be enterd till the dutys on sugar, wine, & 
molasses & indeed till all dutys were repeald. This was 
so deep a stroke that no man in his senses coud pretend 
to say a word, and allow me to say, on these grounds if 
any member here woud give way he woud have the 
whole nation against him, and many of your warmest 
friends said, that if any act was repeald on such grounds, 
it was telling you that you had only to do the same again 
for any purpose you pleas'd, right or wrong. I have told 
you often, & I repeat it now, that those who are your 
chief advisers from hence dont care a farthing for 
your interest more than any other individuals in the 
kingdom ; their object is to overturn the administra- 
tion by distressing goverment in every quarter they 
can, & so far from wishing an accomodation of all 
differences with America, I sincerely believe, they woud 
be very sorry for it, & woud be the first to blame them, 
did they find that they meant to adopt the measures they 
now seem to advise. My situation in life does not call 
upon me to take a Ministeriall part, nor have I views or 
plans to pervert my judgment. I may err from want of 
knowledge ; but what I say to you is the sincere senti- 
ments of my heart, from no other motive but wishing the 
generall good of the whole ; and I now declare to you 
that such is my idea of the good intentions both of Min- 
isters & Parliament to America, that if there was but 
temper & moderation shown on your side every thing that 
a reasonable man coud wish woud readily be granted, 
but while they continue as at present I believe nothing 


more will be clone. I write you my honest & true senti- 
ments for yourself only. I promised you I woud do so, 
& accordingly have done it. And such is my sentiments 
of the true politicall conduct to be observed by this king- 
dom to America that no man can from principle & inclina- 
tion more sincerely wish your prosperity than I do, as 
1 'm convinced it is the interest of this countrey to promote 
it in every particular that does not essentially interfere 
with the commerce of this kingdom. I heard Couim* 
Temple was on his way to this country last Feb ry . If so 
I'm surprised he is not yet arived. I beg my best re- 
spects & comp ts to M rs Bowdoin & your family, to my good 
friend M r Erving, the Temples, & all friends, & that you 
will all accept my best thanks for your many civilitys to 
me when at Boston, & believe me to be with very sincere 
regard, dear Sir, 

Your most obt. & humble servant. 

Alex b Mackay. 

I saw Sir Fr. Barnard when I landed in Sep r last, 
but I have never once seen him since the meeting of 


Fludyer Street, April 10 th , 1770. 

Sir, — The bill for repealing the duties imposed on 
British manufactures, after being defered from time to 
time, pass'd thro' the House of Comons last week, and on 
Saturday the 7 th inst fc it was read in the House of Lords ; 
yesterday it was read a second time, and to-day it pass'd 
thro' the CoiTiittee and will be reported tomorrow ; if the 
opposition to it be renewed I expect no success. Last 
week M r Ald ,n Trecothick gave notice in the House that 
he wou'd yesterday move for leave to bring in a bill to 
repeal the duty imposed on teas. ' He made the motion 

1770.] THOMAS POWNALL. 173 

accordingly, without regarding any discouragement, and 
it was better supported than many expected, but upon a 
division it was rejected by 80 against 52. I don't at 
present recollect any other material motion being made 
during the long unpleasing dependence of this affair 
in that House. In the former part of the session a 
gentleman who is very political told me that he wou'd 
move for a total repeal of the last revenue act, for a 
declaration that the Stat, of Hen. 8 fch for trial of foreign 
treasons does not extend to the Colonies, and for a removal 
of the troops, since which I have never heard of his mak- 
ing any of these motions. After approving them and 
making mention of other grievances, I told him I wou'd 
be concerned in no state tinkering. 

Having taken great preparatory pains in order to make 
a solid & lasting defence of the rights of the Province, I 
was desirous of being heard before the House of Comons ; 
but on mature consideration those members who are your 
principal friends as well as mine were of opinion that 
being reduced to the state of an individual, a motion for 
my being heard in person wou'd be altogether improper as 
well as fruitless. 

I am, with the greatest respect for the Hon ble the 
Council, Sir, 

Your most obedient & most humble servant. 


The Hon blb Sam l Danforth, Esq*. 


London, Albemarle Street, April 11, 70. 

D R Sir, — Having almost from my first entrance into 
y e H. of C. consider'd the mode of our proceedings there 
in those matters which we consider judicially > it occurrd 
to me that adopting some measure on this maxim namely, 


that legislation was conducted by many, judgment by few, 
would remedy those evils which were too justly com- 
plained of in our ordinary course of proceeding, & also 
considering that the spirit of our constitution led to tryal 
by jury, I form'd a plan of tryeing & judging in our House 
by forming a Committee on y e model of a jury. In y e 
course of y e various debates on the Middlesex election 
1VT G. Grenville took occasion to mention our shamefull 
present mode of trying controverted elections & said he 
w d with y e approbation of the House propose a remedy on 
that head. The next day I calld upon him & show'd my 
idea. It proved to be exactly his, whereupon I was desired 
to be named as one of the gentlemen named to bring in the 
bill. The bill has passed our House & will pass y e Lords & be 
enacted. I send you a blank copy, because at y e time that 
I had it under consideration I did also consider whether 
something of this sort might be very beneficially applyed to 
your Assemblies in those proceeding where they take up y c 
consideration & decision of matters of property. I need 
not point out to you the reason why your Assemblies 
go into these proceedings, namely y e want of a Court of 
Chancery properly established, & I wish to avoid appeals, 
which proceedings are scarce regular & constitutionally 
safe in y e hands of a legislative body. However, to rem- 
edy y e mischeives which may arise from them, is [it ?] not 
worth while to consider y e application of some mode of 
doing this business similar to the mode adopted by y e bill 
which I send you enclosed. I am, d r Sir, 

Yo r most obed fc & most humble. 

The Hon ble James Bowdoin, Esqb. 

1770.] SAMUEL HOOD. 175 


Halifax, April 24 th , 1770. 

Dear Sir, — I am favoured with the last sheet you had 
the goodness to fill to me, on the 3 d & 31 st of last month, 
and thank you for it very sincerely, as I do in a very par- 
ticular manner for the account you sent of the truly un- 
happy affair of the 5 th , which gave me very real concern. 
I have read it over very attentively, and the candid man- 
ner in which it appears to have been taken, together with 
the moderation and attention which has been shewn by 
the Town to that unfortunate man. Cap* Preston, must 
reflect great honor on its inhabitants in general, and I am 
perswaded that a continuance of similar conduct w T ill have 
more happy consequences than can perhaps be looked for 
by those whose tempers must have been warmed, and 
have more immediately felt what has happened. 

I perfectly agree with you that there does not appear 
the least foundation to believe that there was any design 
to attack & pillage the Custom House, and therefore it 
seems almost impossible that any depositions can be sent 
home to that effect ; if there has, the deposers must have 
been, as you justly observe, strangely misled, or facts 
must have been withheld in a most extraordinary manner 
from you and the gentlemen joined with you to make the 
enquiry, which cannot be supposed possibly to happen, and 
I think the inhabitants of the town of Boston have shewn 
their wisdom by appointing so respectable a committee to 
investigate truths, for truths alone are able to make last- 
ing impressions. I am very much obliged to Cap* Erving 
for the concern he takes in what regards me, and I entreat 
you will assure him of my best wishes, and that you and 
M 1S Bowdoin will accept them from M rs Hood & me. 

I am much distressed at hearing that the poor man 
who was wounded on board the brig Pitt Packett has in 
some degree lost the use of his arm, and shall be very 


happy to give him a lasting and comfortable subsistence.* 
There is at this time a vacancy for a cook on board one 
of his Majesty's ships under my command, and I have 
wrote to M r Hooper of Marblehead, in whose employ the 
man was, as well as to M r x\dams, his counsel, tender- 
ing him a warrant for her, if he will stop the prosecution 
against M r Peacock. His pay, with that of a servant he 
is allowed, will be twenty-five pounds a year, besides pro- 
visions for both, and the savings he will make from the 
usual perquisites of his office will be five pounds more. 
This is certain as long as he lives, and must be so much 
clear gains to him ; for admitting him to obtain very large 
damages they can never be paid, as I am credibly informed 
that M r Peacock could not raise fifty pounds supposing the 
failure would subject him to a goal during his life, being 
fatherless and motherless, and has nothing to support him 
but his pittance of pay as midshipman of the Rose. I am 
no further interested in this matter than from mv feelings 
for both parties, and the desire I have to relieve them, 
and if you, my good Sir, will be pleased to use your influ- 
ence to bring the affair to a conclusion on the terms I 
have proposed, you will, I am sure do a singular act of 
kindness to both, and in a very particular manner oblige 
me. I am, with great truth and esteem, dear Sir, 
Your most obedient and faithfull humble servant. 

Sam. Hood. 


Fludyer Street, April 28 th , 1770. 

Sir, — The late military violence, attended with so 
great effusion of blood & disorder, in Boston, was so 

* In the latter part of 1769 an attempt was made by a press-gang from the frigate Rose 
to take some seamen from a vessel owned in Marblehead. The seamen resisted, and in the 
struggle the Lieutenant of the Rose was killed, and one of the seamen was wounded in the 
arm. See Life and Letters of John Adams, vol. x. pp. 20-1, 205. — Eds. 

1770.] WILLIAM BOLLAN". 177 

alarming for the present, and pregnant with so great diffi- 
culties respecting the future, that it was not easy to deter- 
mine what was best to be done ; but on consideration one 
thing appeared to me proper & necessary, which was this. 
During this session different persons have at different 
times mentioned an enquiry into the military power ex- 
ercised among you, and for some considerable time past 
Col 1 Gage's & other comissions have lain on. the table of 
the House of Corhons without any thing being done ; and 
the American affairs which had been moved being carried 
by so great a majority against you, some of your chief 
friends seem'd to be clear in opinion that it wou'd be best 
to defer this to be consider'd with other matters in the 
next session, by which time it was hoped such a change 
wou'd be wrought as wou'd in its consequent operations 
be favourable to you. But, not to mention other things 
relative to this business, on considering the late unhappy 
disaster it appear'd to me necessary to make a stroke at 
the root of these military motions, whereupon I directly 
drew up a memorandum, whereof a copy is inclosed, for 
the use of the Lord Mayor & your other principal friends, 
and on the 26 th inst fc M r Alder 11 Trecothick, having moved 
that the intelligence relative to the disputes between 
the inhabitants & the troops, with the orders sent hence 
within a certain space of time shou'd be laid before them, 
in the course of debate the Lord Mayor in strong terms 
charged Col 1 Gage's comission with being unconstitutional, 
unlawful and inconsistent with your Charter, and call'd 
upon the crown lawyers to support it, not one of whom, 
or any other member, undertook its defence, or said one 
word in its behalf in my hearing, and I continued in the 
House during the debate. 

With respect to the late proceedings at Boston, accord- 
ing to my information, ministerial persons on the first 
advice declared them to be a revolt on the part of the 
inhabitants ; but they seem'd afterwards enclined not to 



take them up in so high a key, and on the late debate 
they were expressly treated as a riot & disturbance, and 
it being objected that the King's troops had to their dis- 
honour retreated from their post, the Secry at War, if I 
understood him aright, said that they had not retreated 
thro* fear, and that there was no cause of fear, but they 
retreated properly on the advice of the U Gov r & Council 
of the Province ; that they were sent under expectation 
that the civil magistrate wou'd on occasion assist their 
operations, but being herein disappointed he did not wish 
them to make that return which wou'd be inefficacious, 
and he therefore proposed some provision to be made to 
supply this defect of the civil magistracy, which I in the 
instant understood wou'd be an infraction of your Charter 
& the general rights of the Colonies. His Lordship's 
speech being sometimes low, & my distance considerable, 
I can only declare my own sense of what he said, wherein 
I possibly may, contrary to my apprehensions, be mis- 
taken. Upon the whole the ministerial members did not 
seem enclined to extremities. I am, with the greatest 
respect for the Hon ble the Council, Sir, 

Your most obedient & most humble servant. 


The Hon ble Sam l Danforth, Esq r . 


1. Major Gen 1 Gage's coiiiission appointing him com- 
ander of all the King's forces employed in North America 
was not given in time of war to impower him to lead & 
coinand the King's soldiers against his enemies, but, altho* 
it appears to have been taken from Maj r Gen 1 Amherst's 
comission, which issued in time of war, was issued in time 
of peace, when by the constitution of the British empire, 
whereof the Colonies are members, the public peace, order 
& justice are to be maintain' d under the direction of the 
laws by the civil magistrates & civil officers, without the 

1770.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 179 

least interposition of any military men at their discre- 
tion, whose subservience to the civil power is ever to be 

2. In every Colony which hath no special regimen 
formed by charter the King is Governour, and the person 
whom thro' necessity of the local exercise of the powers of 
government he deputes to govern for & under him is his 
locum tenens and the imediate governour of all men within 
that colony, who being all to be governed by the coihon 
statute, or provincial law, unalterable by the power of 
the Crown, as the case requires, the King by his judges 
dispenses justice to his subjects there, and by his gov- 
ernour regulates, orders, & directs other affairs of 

3. The King by letters patent appoints the Governour 
of the Province of Massachusetts Bay, according to their 
Charter granted by King William & Queen Mary, which 
the King cannot by any comission rescind in the whole 
or in part, and which unites the chief civil & military 
authority in the Governour, and provides that he with 
seven or more of the assistants or counsellors constituted 
pursuant to the Charter may from time to time hold a 
Council for the ordering & directing the affairs of the 

4. Nevertheless in consequence of the comission given 
to Gen 1 Gage, which requires all the Governours & civil 
officers in the Colonies to be aiding & assisting to him, 
and of various errors, the military forces placed at Boston 
in the said Province and the Governour have mutually dis- 
claimed his authority over them, so that numerous bodies 
of military men are now subsisting in the Colonies inde- 
pendent of the civil government to the great danger of 
the comon-weal. 



Fludyer Street, May l Bt , 1770. 

Sir, — I have very lately been informed that measures 
have been taken, the particulars whereof I cou'd not learn, 
for geting the intelligence transmited for the Province 
service ; how far this kind of proceeding may prejudice 
that service & the parties concerned, needs not be men- 
tioned ; and, on the other hand, I have been censured 
for obtaining & sending copies of Gov r Bernard's letters, 
altho' I obtained them in the same manner wherein from 
time to time I obtain' d copies of papers in my former 
agencies. The first parcel sent by direction of a knight 
of the shire for the county of Wilts, and the second by 
direction of the present Lord Mayor. The clerk wou'd 
have had me receive the latter copies without his authen- 
tication, which with difficulty I obtain' d. The point first 
mentioned occasions my present writing to acquaint you 
with the matter, and to desire that my letter of the 28 th 
ult mo may be consider'd as a letter to you, whose contents 
are only to be communicated to the members of the 
Council, without the letter's being subjected to inspection, 
or copies of it taken by any others. On signing this I 
shall directly set out for Gravesend, to forward it with 
the former. I am, with great respect, S r , 

Your most obedient humble servant. 


P. S. Pray do not let this matter be divulged. 

The Hon. Sam l Danfortii Esq r . 

1770.] WILLIAM BOLLAN". 181 


Fludyer Street, May 11 th , 1770. 

Sir, — On the 8 th instant Gov r Pownall made a motion 
whereof you have a copy, taken from that which he sent 
me, in the progress whereof the Lord Mayor declared, as 
he had done before, Gen 1 Gage's comiss 11 unconstitutional, 
to which it was answer'd, without any avowal of its 
legality, that the first coihission of this sort was form'd 
under the inspection of Lord Hardwick, and that the 
present comission had six weeks before been refered to the 
Attorney & Sollicitor General for their opinions which had 
not yet been given. 

I was unwilling to suffer in silence under censure for 
obtaining and transmiting copies of those letters which so 
nearly concerned the welfare of the Province, and there- 
fore drew up a petition, whereof you have a copy inclosed. 
I much doubted whether it was presentable according to 
the orders of the House ; but in that case it might serve 
for instruction. On shewing it to the Lord Mayor, he 
said it could not be presented, but wou'd answer the pur- 
pose aforementioned ; and in the course of the debate he 
complained that you had been condemned unheard, and 
that a friend of his had been censured for taking copies 
necessary to your defence, and his Lordship having given 
a written direction for the chief part of them, he frankly 
took the matter upon himself. 

The inclosed votes will shew you what was done the 
next day, when the right of taxation or the present 
American military comission was not mentioned. The 
opposition to the Ministry being composed in part of 
persons formerly concerned in measures prejudicial to the 
Colonies, I was informed beforehand that they intended 
to consider only the late proceedings without the least 
hopes of success. 

The inclosed public paper containing an essay sign'd 


Creon, being said to be written by a gentleman in the 
administration I send it. 

From what passed on the 8 th I understood that the 
troops were intended to be withdrawn ; but political 
measures at present are extremely uncertain, and those 
lately taken have not transpired as usual. The present 
state of the Province service in my humble opinion plainly 
requires what I before hastily mentioned, that your intelli- 
gence sliou'd not be ecchoed back here. I am, with the 
greatest respect, Sir, 

Your most obedient & most humble servant. 

W. Boll an. 

The Hon blb Sam l Danforth, Esq\ 

Fludyer Street, Westm", May 11 th , 1770. 

Gentlemen, — Your letter relating to the late military 
massacre at Boston, which I had the honour to receive by 
express, was accompanied with such ample proofs, con- 
sider'd in point of number, matter, candour, propriety, & 
fairness of caption, that I flatter myself they will in time 
prevail, and establish the truth in the minds of all honest 
men, maugre all the attempts made with art & sollici- 
tude to represent the inhabitants as the aggressors. I 
had some hopes of geting the authentic copies laid before 
the House of Coinons for consideration in this session, 
with the other papers laid before them ; but they are 
vanished, and the Parliament will rise in a short time. 
From what was openly said not long since I understood 
the troops wou'd be removed, but the times abound with 
uncertainty as well as difficulty. I have the honour to 
be with great respect, and the sincerest wishes for the wel- 
fare of the town, Gentlemen, 

Your most obedient humble servant. 



P. S. Capt n Gard'ner staid here by my direction til this 
day, in order to promote the public service by his examina- 
tion in the House of Comons, or otherwise, as occasion 
shou'd require. 

Ja 8 Bowdoin, Esq* & others, a com ttee of the town of Boston. 


Gentlemen, — I have already done myself the honor 
to write to you by this conveyance. Just now in a con- 
versation with the Duke of Richmond, his Grace (on every 
occasion a constitutional friend & patron of America) sug- 
gested an idea w ch if adopted must not only refute every 
calumny on the humanity, but also stamp a character of 
generosity & magnanimity on the inhabitants of Boston, 
as well as evince their affection to the mother country & 
the most sincere desire to make advances towards a full 
reconciliation. The idea is this : That in case Cap* Pres- 
ton & the soldiers, or any of them, should be sentenced 
to death, the inhabitants do in a public town meeting 
agree on an address to the Gov r to suspend their execu- 
tion, & to convey to his Majesty their humble request that 
he will be pleased to extend his royal mercy & pardon 

This procedure will be consistent w th every rule of 
moral & religious virtue, & would afford such an oppor- 
tunity to government of making ample & graceful returns 
of favor as may be effectual to the case of all our sub- 
sisting differences & fully restore that cordial affection 

* Barlow Trecothick was an influential merchant in London, as well as one of the 
aldermen and a member of Parliament. He had been a resident in Boston, where he had 
taken a prominent part in the management of the affairs of King's Chapel. While living 
in Boston he was married, March 2, 1746-7, to Grizel, daughter of Charles Apthorp, and a 
friend and correspondent of Mrs. John Temple. He died in London, June 2, 1775. See 
Foote's Annals of King's Chapel, vol. i. p. 523; vol. ii. p. 69, note. — Eds. 


& attachment on both sides w ch only can establish public 
peace & general security. I am, with the greatest respect, 
Gent n , 

Yo r most obed. hum. serv*, 

Barlow Trecothick. 

House of Commons, 16 th May, 1770. 

Inclosed I send you copy of resolutions to be moved for 
by his Grace, supported by all y r other friends in the 
House of Peers, on Fry day next. Parliament is to be 
prorogued on Saturday the 19 th instant. My Lord Duke 
desires me to add that he shall esteem himself particularly 
fortunate if this suggestion of his is adopted, as he hopes 
the greatest good might result from so generous & manly 
a proceeding, & altho' he has always been attached to 
America, thinking they have met with hard treatment, & 
will ever be zealous that Great Britain should recover 
& preserve the affections of the Americans by good usage, 
w ch he thinks the only tye that can be lasting, yet if this 
plan could be pursued he should think himself doubly 
bound by the tie of gratitude to promote on all occasions 
their true interests which must ever be the same with 
those of Great Britain. 

To the Gent n of the Comittee of the Town of Boston. 


1. Resolved, That in several of his Majesties Colonies in 
North America, disorders have of late prevailed, prejudi- 
cial to the trade and commerce of this kingdom & destruc- 
tive to the peace & prosperity of the said Colonies. 

2. Resolved, That the letter of the Earl of Hillsborough 
of the 22 d of April, 1768, to Francis Bernard, Esq r , Gover- 
nor of the Massachusets Bay was a common office letter 
without any particular mark or special direction for keep- 
ing the same or any part of the same secret. 

3. Resolved, that it does not appear that any direction 


of secrecy had been given in any seperate letter or paper 
transmitted with the said letter. 

4. Resolved, That said letter did contain an order for 
dissolving the Assembly of the Province of Massachusets 
Bay upon their refusal to comply with certain propo- 

5. Resolved, That Gov r Bernard did lay the said propdi 
sitions before the Assembly, and did threaten the said 
Assembly with a dissolution & its consequences, and did 
in vindication and support of such proceedings lay before 
the Assembly the said letter of the Earl of Hillsborough. 

6. Resolved, That the directing the dissolution of the 
Assemblies of North America upon their refusal to comply 
with certain propositions operated as a menace, injurious 
to the deliberative capacity of the Assemblies, excited 
discontent, and contributed to produce unjustifiable com- 

7. Resolved, That the Assemblies of North America hav- 
ing been dissolved for not disavowing or discountenancing 
certain combinations, the suffering new Assemblies to sit 
without disavowing or discountenancing the said combina- 
tions, was a proceeding full of inconsistency, and tending 
to lower in the minds of his Majesty's subjects in America 
all opinion of the wisdom & firmness of his Majesty's 

8. Resolved, That Lord Botetourt, his Majesty's Gover- 
nor of the Province of Virginia, was instructed by a 
letter from the Earl of Hillsborough in the following 
words, — " His Majesty relys upon your prudence and 
fidelity for such an explication of his measures, &c." 

9. Resolved, That these his Majesty's measures appear 
by the said letter to be measures concerning the distinc- 
tion of certain principles of taxation and the repeal of cer- 
tain taxes imposed by authority of Parliament. 

10. Resolved, That in consequence of the said instruc- 
tions Lord Botetourt was authorised (as far as a letter of 


a Secretary of State was authority) to state these measures 
as his Majesty's measures, and to explain the same accord- 
ing to his notions of prudence. 

11. Resolved, That Lord Botetourt did accordingly 
assure the Assembly that his Majesty would rather lose 
his Crown than preserve it by deceit. 

12. Resolved, That this declaration is highly improper, 
inasmuch as it is personally involving his Majesty in the 
measures of his Ministers. 

13. Resolved, That the said assurance related to the 
repeal of certain taxes and the distinction of certain 

14. Resolved, That it is unwarrantable, of dangerous 
consequence, and an high breach of the priviledge of 
Parliament to promise to the Assemblies in North America 
the interposition or influence of his Majesty or of his con- 
fidential servants with Parliament in any manner which 
may tend to create an opinion in those Assemblies that 
such interposition or influence must necessarily bring on a 
repeal of any duties or taxes laid or to be laid by author- 
ity of Parliament. 

15. Resolved, That it is highly derogatory from his 
Majesty's honor and from the freedom of Parliamentary 
deliberation to pledge the faith of the Crown to the said 
Assemblies for the repealing or laying on, or continuing, 
or not laying of any taxes or duties whatsoever. 

16. Resolved, That to give assurances in his Majesty's 
name distinguishing certain principles of taxation & dis- 
claiming an intention to propose any taxes within the said 
description in order to establish and justify unwarrant- 
able distinctions has a tendency further to disturb the 
minds of his Majesty's subjects in America & to weaken 
the authority of lawfull government. 

17. Resolved, That to lay before this House suggestions 
of treason or misprision of treason subsisting in America 
in order to bring this House into a plan for the repressing 

1770.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 187 

'& punishing such supposed treasons & misprisions of 
treason when in reality no such treasons or misprisions 
of treason did subsist, or if they did subsist, no measures 
whatsoever have been taken or appear to have been 
intended for apprehending & punishing the persons con- 
cerned in the same, is an audacious insult on the 
dignity of Parliament, & in its consequences tends either 
to bring a reflexion on the wisdom and justice of Parlia- 
ment, or to encourage treasons and treasonable practices 
by neglecting to carry into execution measures recom- 
mended by Parliament. 

18. Resolved, That these many ill-judged & inconsis- 
tent proceedings have been a principal cause of the afore- 
said disorders. 


Fludyer Street, May 19 th , 1770. 

Sir, — Yesterday was appointed for Lord Chatham to 
make a motion respecting the state of America ; but his 
Lordship was so far indisposed that he cou'd not attend ; 
nevertheless the papers laid before the House were read, 
after which the Duke of Eichmond proposed questions of 
the same general nature with those which were proposed 
in the House of Comons on the 9 th inst*, whereupon Lord 
Hillsborough made a motion to adjourn, which was sup- 
ported by a great majority, so these questions will not be 
enter' d in the journals. I say this wholly from informa- 
tion, for the door-keeper on my application told me that 
according to the orders given no Lord cou'd carry with 
him any person into the House, that he cou'd not desire 
any Lord to come out to any body, nor carry in any paper 
to any of their Lordships. This day the Parliament was 


The new extraordinary powers given to the Courts of 
Admiralty in the colonies being, in my opinion, not only 
unconstitutional & derogatory of your provincial powers 
of judicature, but likewise rendered grievous by proceed- 
ings relative to execution inconsistent in several cases 
with the civil as well as comon law, according to the rep- 
resentations contained in the merchants' observations, the 
Province service, as well as the interest of the merchants, 
I conceive, requires that authentic copies be sent of the 
whole proceedings in some of the cases most notorious for 
the hardships suffered by the defendants. The irregular 
k groundless prosecution of M r Hancock, in order to sub- 
ject him to large penalties, is plainly one of those cases. 
Copies of the like prosecutions against M r Gray & others 
may also be serviceable, with copies of the proceedings 
to condemnation of the two coasting vessels for trifling 
causes ; and I shall write by this ship to the coiiiittee of 
merch ts hereupon. It is needless to say that allegations 
without proper proofs ready to support them rather dis- 
serve than advance a cause when redress is sought from 
proper authority. In a casual conversation which I lately 
had with one of the Lords of Trade he mentioned a Court 
of Exchequer as proper for trial of comercial offenses, 
upon which I observed that your Superior Court having 
proper authority, I had as counsel been concern'd in ob- 
taining several verdicts in such cases in favour of the 
King, &c. 

Some of the colonies, I am inform'd, have comittees of 
correspondence with their agents, in order to prevent on 
occasion any of their mutual communications being made 
known to their prejudise. I am, with great respect, Sir, 
Your most obedient & most humble servant. 

The Hon ble Sam l Danforth, Esq r . 

1770.] THOMAS POWNALL. 189 



London, June — , 70. 

Gentlemen, — My last letters to you in answer to 
yours of March were dated May 11, & were sent by Cap fc 
Gardiner. I hope you have received them safe, & that 
they will have had their effect in recommending you to 
act with moderation & mercy rather than to exact severe 
justice in the case of Cap* Preston & the soldiers. I 
therein also acquainted you that as Ministry, in answer to 
the arguments on which I supported my motion respect- 
ing y e army establishment in America, had declared that 

his M y had given orders to have y e state of that 

establishment referrd to y e Crown lawyers upon y e points 
of doubt in law & government which had arisen, I thought 
it would be prudent as well as just to believe that they 
were in earnest & meant fairly ; to give them credit & to 
hold them pledged by thus crediting ; suspending in the 
mean time all opposition on that point, to meet them on 
that ground of reconciliation & reunion which a revision 
of that point might give. And I do verily believe that 
if Lord North's good sense & integrity could have their 
full operation all might be reconciled ; but, that I may not 
draw you into a dangerous security by my former advice 
to you to suspend all fear, I think it now my duty to say 
that I have my fears that if y e case of y e franchises & 
rights of the Americans & of the constitutions of their 
governments is not duely stated (upon which case only so 
as it is stated will a lawyer give his opinion), the opinions 
of the Crown lawyers may be aberrant from truth, contra- 
dictory to right, & dangerous & delusive in practice. If 
what I have heard be true that the case has been once so 
stated, & such opinions given thereon that it hath been 
thought necessary to have a new case or fresh matter 


stated, I have a right to doubt any good coming from 
such opinions. And if those who should state these cases 
are so uninformd of the right & actual case as to be liable 
to indecision in y e stating, they may receive opinions 
armed with which they may think themselves justifyed in 
law when they are acting in direct violation of: y e rights 
& constitutions of y e Colonies as by law established, as I 
think the giving the command of any land forces (posted 
within y e limitts of the jurisdiction of any Province) to 
any other commander than to y e King's locum tenens, the 
supream civil magistrate, would be. You already know 
my opinion on that head. I speak as an Englishman of 
y e realm, wishing to guard my country and my country- 
men here of y e realm against that most dangerous, pesti- 
lential of all diseases in y e civil constitution, military power. 
It is most dangerous when it first seizes y e extremities, & 
more especially so, when it appears in its first symptoms as 
a remedial crisis of some supposed disease in y e community, 
of some supposed defect in the civil authority. In such 
cases while you keep strictly within the bounds of duty, 
scrupulously within y e line of law, clear (both as a body cor- 
porate & as subjects in your individuality) of all possibility, 
by legal charge, of imputation of non usage or abuse of your 
franchises, you certainly have a right by all legal courses 
in your courts of law, by all constitutional means in your 
general assemblies, to oppose & object to y e establishment 
of a military force within y e limitts of your Province 
which is not under y e command of your Governor, the 
supream civil magistrate as the King's locum tenens. 
Under this general head I think some events which have 
taken place in y c Province, & some stepps proposed in 
consequence of them, will bring on a nice & intricate ques- 
tion touching the command of Castle William, so nice & 
so intricate that I do not know what terms to use in the 
statinir of it. Should a measure talked of ever be carried 
into execution, that also would bring forward a like 

1770.] THOMAS POWNALL. 191 

difficulty under y e same question, — I mean y e building a 
citadel on Fort Hill. 

The whole tenor of my correspondence with my freinds 
in America, & of my advice to those here who would give 
me the hearing, has been trying to form some line of 
reconciliation & reunion, & from time to time as y e cases 
changed to advise each party by conceding somewhat to 
take such ground as might meet that line. But I find 
that I have been the dupe of my own good wishes. The 
great men here despise my advice, & I see enough both in 
the ignorance & in y e bad temper of men never more to 
advise any thing but that (entrenching yourselves in y e 
rights of Englishmen as your citadel & within your Char- 
ter rights as works which guard that citadel in America) 
you take special & more than ordinary care that no ad- 
vantage is taken against you by your advancing any 
works beyond y e ground that those rights extend to, nor 
by y e conduct of your people, whereby it may be charged 
against you that either the peace is not kept, or that you 
have abused your franchises, or that the jurisdiction of 
the civil magistrate is not exerted to the support of gov- 
ernment, which you are bound to maintain under pen- 
alty of forfeiture of those franchises. You will see how 
necessary this advice is when you hear that the Privy 
Council have been sitting several daies in examination of, 
& in deliberation (as it is said) upon, y e affairs of Boston 
& of y e Province [of] Massachusetts Bay. They have ex- 
amined many persons upon oath as to y e state of the peace 
& of government there. They have had, as I have heard, 
an authentic copy of some incautious letter said to be writ- 
ten from y e town of Boston to Salem. The persons whom 
I have heard mentioned as examined are S r F. Bernard, 
M r Harrison, M r Robinson, Cap* Scott, & a young man 
lately come from Boston whose name is Bridgeman. The 
points to which these examinations pointed were y e state 
of the peace & of government at Boston, whether y e Crown 


officers could find protection in carrying on the business 
of the Crown, &c. I understand that this step has been 
taken in order that they may be grounded in facts when 
they shall come to advise his Majesty what course to take 
in these affairs, either as acting in y e executive line or as 
preparing some plan of measures to be proposed to Parlia- 
ment. But candor here will ask what kind of ground in 
facts can such an evidence taken ex parte & founded rather 
in opinion than testimony give ? However upon such 
like grounds they are to form their plan which is to be 
hereafter proposed, & in y c mean while certain measures 
are to be taken as preventive only. Various are y e con- 
jectures & rumors which are circulating as to what is 

Some say y e general rendevous of the fleet is to be at 
Boston, & that your trade will be putt under a restraint 
more strict than usual, & more so than is observed els- 
where. I can scarce credit this ; yet think it right to 
mention it as a caution to you. 

The fixing the Custom House at Castle Island is a 
measure that hath been suggested, but this seems too 
foolish, & yet I will not say but it may be true. 

Now if upon y e grounds which Ministry shall take they 
should be able to state it as a case, That within y e juris- 
diction of the Province the peace is not preserved ; that 
y e subject is not protected in his property, the servant of 
y e Crown in his office ; that there hath been a non usage 
on one hand & an abuse on y e other of your franchises ; — 
your Charter itself may be attacked by a writt of quo 
warranto from y e courts, or by some act in Parliament. 
Nay, if no legal prosecution w T ou'd ]ye against you, yet 
on grounds of general policy & expediency some altera- 
tions (as for instance in your Council) may be meditated 
& advised. You ought therefore to have here a proper 
agent & also a legal attorney to appear for you in the 
Courts. Kemember how your last Charter was lost by 

1770.] THOMAS HOLLIS. 193 

default of appearance. One part also of the plan talked 
of, & I beleive intended, is to give to your Governors 
more extensive & independent salaries. If it is meant 
thereby to make y e government exterior in its principle I 
need not here repeat an opinion which I have so fully 
given on this head in Parliament. 

However, notwithstanding all this, if you take y e com- 
mon precautions & act with no more than common sense 
& keep your temper, I shall have no great fears for you. 
Yet to be forewarnd is y e first step to security. I am with 
respect & affection to y e town & Province, Gentlemen, 
Y r friend & serv*. 



Palmal, June 18, 1770. 


The packet, with a duplicate letter, dated March 23, 
1770, was received this day. 

I shall be proud, at all times, to shew respect to the peo- 
ple of the Town of Boston, and Province of Massachusetts, 
believing them to be a virtuous, loyal and magnanimous 
people. But, so ordinary a person am I, and so very a 
Whig, that I do not apprehend I can be of other use to 
them, than to send them a few books occasionally for 
their College. I have the honor to be, Gentlemen, 
Your most humble servant 

T. Hollis. 

The Hon. James Bowdoin, Dr. Joseph Warren, and Samuel Pem- 
berton, Esq., at Boston, in New England. 

* Grand-nephew of the eminent benefactor of Harvard College. He was born in 1720, 
and died in 1774. He lived most of his life in seclusion, and attended no church, though he 
is described as a person of unusual piety. He was greatly interested in literature, and 
made numerous and important gifts to Harvard College. At his death he left his property 
to Thomas Brand, who took the name of Hollis. See Dictionary of National Biography, 
vol. xxvii. pp. 176, 177; Quinc3''s Hist, of Harvard University, vol. ii. pp. 144-147. 
— Eds. 




Boston, July 7, 1770. 

Dear Sir, — The latest intelligence from England was 
rec d here last evening by Capt. Gardiner, who was sent 
thither express with the town's dispatches on y e subject of 
the late massacre. The representations of that affair con- 
tained in y e papers that went by M r Robson occasioned 
great resentment to be expressed against y e town, and 
regiments and men-of-war were at least talked of to be 
sent hither in consequence of it. But on Gardiner's ar- 
rival and delivering his dispatches y e resentment subsided, 
and an end was put to the design of sending troops and 
men-of-war. There are several letters in answer to our 
dispatches, in one of which from a member of Parliament 
dated May 11 th it is said that as the troops are withdrawn 
from the town the ministry have given assurances that 
they shall not return, unless they shall be required by the 
civil magistrates, which, he acids, is a thing not likely to 
happen. This will be some disappointment to the Com- 
missioners who, it seems, are making one more effort 
to procure troops under color of safety; they have again 
betaken themselves to the Castle, and are playing y e same 
farce over again as was played off in 1768. But they 
would have been as safe here as they could be anywhere ; 
perhaps safer, not because they have given y e people here 
reason to have any perticular affection for them, but be- 
cause it was conceived they were desirous of some insult, 
in order to urge therefrom y e necessity of quartering 
troops upon the town, in which case there was no disposi- 
tion to oblige them, and because it was apprehended their 
own conduct would procure the dissolution of their Board. 
You can be no stranger to their conduct since the 5 th of 
March. It has been so very absurd, that 'tis thought 
they were in distress for something to cover it, some at- 

1770.] THOMAS POWNALL. 195 

tack upon them, though made out of due time, to justify 
it. Hence it is pretty generally believed that the break- 
ing of M r H's windows at Brooklyn * and the nominal or 
real assault upon M r Comptrol r P r t were executed, or pro- 
cured to be executed, by the outdoor people of the Custom 
House. But supposing they had no previous knowledge 
of it, such a trifling affair could afford no reason for the 
Commissioners running away to the Castle, any more than 
y e soldiers killing a number of persons on the 5 th of March 
could be a reason for their removing a few miles out of 
town & discontinuing their Board. What effect their 
new representations will produce a few months will dis- 
cover. So long as such men are continued in offices in 
America, it may be expected animosities between Britain 
and the Colonies will continue, even if all the late revenue 
laws were repealed. 

When I rec d y r last favour (of y e 24 th of April) &c, ab* 
M r Peacock's affair, &c. 

I have y e honor to be Y rs , &c. 

J. Bowdoin. 

To Sam l Hood, Comodore, at Halifax. 


London, July 10, 70. 

D R Sir, — I sitt down & write by this vessel w ch sails 
to-morrow to acquaint you that I wrote to you by y e 
packett; y e mail went from London for Falmouth last 

* Henry Hulton, one of the Commissioners of the Customs. On the evacuation of 
Boston he went to Halifax with the British troops, and afterward to England, where he 
died in 1790. (See Sabine's American Loyalists, vol. i. p. 554.) The Boston Evening- 
Post of June 25, 1770, says, — "We hear from Brookline, that on Tuesday Night last, 
between 11 and 12 o'Clock, the Windows of the Dwelling-House of Mr. Hulton, one of 
the Commissioners of the Customs, were broke by Persons unknown. Upon Complaint 
made by Mr. Hulton, his Honor the Lieutenant-Governor, with the Advice of his Majesty's 
Council, has issued a Proclamation offering a Reward of £50 for the Discovery of the 
Offenders. We hear Mr. Hulton has since retired to the Castle." — Eds. 

t James Porter, Comptroller-General of the Customs. He left Boston, with the British 
army, in March, 1776. — Eds. 


Saturday. I enclosed in that letter one for y e Comit- 
tees of y e town of Boston who had written to me in March, 
which I beggd the favor of you to communicate to them. 
I shall in a few daies write by a safe hand & will apprise 
you of all that has been under planning & is intended, 
with my sentiments thereon. I write this only to acquaint 
you that if you or any of my freinds wrote any letters to 
me or to D r Franklin by y e Lydia, Cap* Scott, by y e 
Thomas, Cap* Davis, or y e Susannah, C* Johnson, none are 
come to hand, & to suggest to you & our freinds not to 
come to any premature resolutions or decisions 'till you 
are fully apprized of y e ground your affairs are likely to 
be sett on, which you shall be by one who loves y e people 
he was once connected with, & from a real knowledge of 
your good heart & excellent head is, with every sentiment 
of esteem, 

Your affect, freind & ser. 

The Hon l James Bowdoin, Esq. 


London, July 14, 70. 

To t e Hon ble James Bowdoin, Esq. : D R Sir, — I 
wrote to you on y e 7 th instant, enclosing a letter to y e 
gentlemen of y e Committees of y e Town of Boston who 
had written to me on y e affairs of that Town & of y e 
Province ; a duplicate is enclosed under y e same cover 
with this. I had been more explicit & particular than, 
upon consultation with a freind, a considerable lawyer, 
was thought safe, considering the exceeding maliciousness 
& violence of bad men who have power, & that I am one 
marked as an American partizan. I feel so much & fear 
so much for general liberty, & for that of America in 
particular, that, would my private domestic connections 
have permitted it, I would have come this summer to 

1770.] THOMAS POWNALL. 197 

Boston to have had some communication & explanation 
with my freinds there. Advice must be grounded on y e 
real & actual state of things & of measures, & yet it is 
not safe alway to state y e one or to point out y e other. 
This is more particularly y e case at present. However, 
I think I cannot be misunderstood by my friends, nor 
misinterpreted by my enemies. 

I have been alway advising my freinds in America to 
concessions, flattering myself that I saw some hopes that 
there was a temper which w d make some here ; but I 
have been deceived. Those who think themselves abso- 
lutely right do not think they could be justify ed in making 
any concessions wherein they think they should give up 
y e rights of government. Those of two contending par- 
ties who think they have y e power will seldom have y e 
candor & good sense to give up part, so as to retain y e rest 
undisputed. Hence those who are weakest seldom think 
it safe to make concessions, especially if such are to give 
up any thing that may abate their right, or lessen their 
legal ability to prosecute that right. Upon these grounds, 
I tell you fairly, I have lost all hopes of any accommoda- 
tion. The advice contained in the enclosed memorandum 
was given & explained from some hopes which I thought 
I saw in y e good sense & good disposition of L d North of 
accommodation & of a wish to take reconciling healing 
measures. I still retain my opinion of his good wishes & 
good intentions, but alas, he has not power to do y e good 
he would, while others take y e lead. I send you a copy 
of it that by seing what will not be accepted here, you 
may be y e better apprised what you have to trust to. 
You will see that I confined my conversation, opinions, & 
advice to y e three points on which my friends of y e town 
& Province express their most earnest wishes, 1. y e 
revenue laws ; 2. the military ; 3 y e Commissioners of the 
Custom in America. 

I think I may venture to apprise you that the plan 


is certainly, to alter your Charter; to make y e Council 
derive from y e nomination of the Crown, instead of aris- 
ing from election. The dividing y e legislative from y e 
Privy Council hath been talked of. The first to be quam- 
diu se bene gesserit ; y e other to be durante bene jolacito. 
The giving your Governors, &c, independent salaries is, I 
believe, certainly intended. Whether any alteration in 
your Charter as to y e command of y e military is intended 
I have not learned, but suspect it, & think it a most 
dangerous one, if y e command is made exterior of & 
paramount to the civil. And yet upon these plans of 
attack & alteration, I cannot but be of opinion, that if 
Ministry remember y e precedents of James y e 2 d , when he 
attacked y e charters of corporations, they will not venture 
to bring your affairs into y e courts of law ; for they can- 
not judge your charter to be vacated on any grounds 
which may not extend to every charter within y e realm. 
Lett them then consider what a spirit of alarm & terror 
they will spread through y e land, proximus ardet Ucalegon 
will make it every man's case. And if they attempt 
y e moving of old boundaries & make alterations upon 
subsequent ideas of expediency & policy, that will lay 
open a ground on which every Charter & grant of every 
kind may be dissolved. If Ministers mean thus to attack 
you, & do attack you in your rights, read over y e prece- 
dents in Charles y e 1 st time as to y e method by which y e 
Irish attacked Ministers who attempted innovations on 
their constitution, & particularly by y e military line, you 
w T ill find that they appointed commissioners, arin'd with 
proper evidence to make good a charge against them, 
when y e times permitted it. I should be glad to have 
your opinion on this head. Whenever it shall be neces- 
sary to appoint such commissioners & y e times permitt it 
you must join some freinds here in such commission 
whom you can trust & have a confidence in, that under- 
stand y e mode of doing business here. 


On y e subject of alterations in your Charter, would it 
not be a wise step for you yourselves to take up some 
measure of incorporating by an act of your own your 
townships or districts into some form of magistracy, so as 
to secure y e form agreeable to yourselves & suitable to your 
Charter privileges, lest some such form as w d not suit, 
and such as you w d not like, might be imposed upon you 
by some other act ? 

I think in the present crisis of danger & difficulty, you 
ought to excuse no town from sending their representa- 
tives to General Court. All ought to attend. 

You will hear that L d Hillsborough has taken M r Knox # 
as his Under Secretary. This is y e gentleman who wrote 
expressly against y e Americans in a flippant pamphlet. 
This cannot but be a marking symptom. Lett me hear 
from you. Pray make my respects to all friends, parti- 
cularly to those I used to meet at your house & to those 
of your own family. I am, d r Sir, 

Y r affec. friend. 




June y e 5 th , 1770. 

Mem of a Conversation. 

pointed out in general as 

the ground & principles whereon he shou'd establish what 
he afterwards spoke to, the different operation of internal 
& external government. 

Confin'd y e conversation in particular to the three fol- 
lowing points. 

* William Knox was born in Ireland in 1732, was Under Secretary of State from 1770 
to 1782, and died in England, Aug. 25, 1810. He was a zealous advocate of the claims of 
the mother country in the disputes with the Colonies, and published numerous tracts and 
volumes on the subject. See N. Y. Col. Docs., vol. viii., pp. 803, 804, note. — Eds. 




1 st . Recommended such a revision of y e laws for y e reg- 
ulation of y e American trade & of those laying duties, as 
that by throwing all into one on a constitutional ground 
the causes of complaint made by y e Colonies might be re- 
mov'd, & yet government here not dishonor'd by express 
concessions, if they thought the concessions made by a re- 
peal of any law such dishonor. Because such general law 
form'cl on a new plan, & framed & conducted on commer- 
cial purposes, all y e parts in y e old laws w ch gave offence 
would fall of course & yet such express repeal be avoided. 
Gov* might then on this new ground take y e line w ch dis- 
tinguishes y e imposing taxes on any property lyeing within 
& being y e property of subjects of a jurisdiction lyeing & 
being without the realm so imposing y e taxes, from y e 
imposts & duties laid on property & being without the 
limitts of that jurisdiction, & laying & being either within 
& of y e realm or passing thro' y e seas whereto y e rights 
of that jurisdiction do not extend & where such property 
must pass under y e such regulations as y e sovereignty 
there permitting & protecting it shall prescribe. That 
taking this line of distinction without any express decla- 
ration of rights, & leaving out all declarations w ch appro- 
priate y e summs rais'd to y e purpose of revenue & for y e 
support of government independent of y e grants of y e peo- 
ple, &c, such a revision & such a plan of laws of trade 
might lead to reconciliation & union betwixt y e mother 
country & y e Colonies. 

II. That the people of America wou'd never acquiesce, 
howsoever they might be reduc'd to submitt, under the 
establishment of a standing army rais'd & kept up without 
communication w th y e will of their respective communities 
& commande d independent of & paramount to their supream 
civil magistrate. That they wou'd alway consider such 
army as foreign to their jurisdiction, as an external force, 
not y e force of the community, that the civil jurisdiction, thus 
thinking, wou'd not only not aid, but from a necessary & 


constitutional jealousy wou'd by all legal courses & by all 
constitutional methods obstruct & counteract that state 
& establishment of the military in every line whose direc- 
tion proceeded ab extra. 

That y e people of these American jurisdictions conceiv- 
ing that taxes were imposed on them by an exertion of 
authority for purposes of revenue, independent of their 
free grants, and that a military force (which was no part 
of y e force of y e community) was collected ab extra, wou'd 
never be induc'd on any further occasion by any requisi- 
tion whatever to raise a revenue for these same pur- 
poses, nor to create a military in addition to this already 
establish'd, whose establishment they do not acquiesce 
under. That the attempt to maintain this establishment 
of y e military wou'd involve y e government of y e mother 
country in a dispute as entangled & intricate & as obstinately 
urg'd & carried to as dangerous lengths as y e dispute on tax- 
ation. That all this might be avoided by putting this matter 
of government on its right basis, that is, by government's 
applying by requisition to y e several Colonies to raise each, 
in proportion to y e necessity of the service & to their abili- 
ties, a certain number of men, upon y e same terms pre- 
cisely, & in y e same manner, as Ireland doth ; & by 
settling it as y e proper measure of Colony administration 
that those several bodies of men thus rais'd by each Colony 
shou'd be under y e jurisdiction while within y e precincts 
of it, precisely & exactly as y e troops in Ireland are under 
y e jurisdiction of that kingdom, & under y e military com- 
mand of y e supream civil commander. Yet, nevertheless, 
wherever & in whatever manner it shou'd be necessary to 
collect these several bodies into one command, that then 
some civil officer in time of peace, or a military comman- 
der-in-chief in time of war, might have y e same power to 
command these exactly & precisely as y e state holder in 
y e Seven United Provinces {mutatis mutandis) commands 
y e several troops of y e several provinces, when employ'd 


as y e army of y e States General, whereas y e sovereignty of 
each province commands each its own troops when not so 
employ 'd. That an army so constituted wou'd answer all 
the internal purposes of force added to y e aid of govern- 
ment, because y e supream civil magistrate wou'd have no 
scruple where force was really wanted to apply this as it 
was y e force of y e community acting upon itself, whereas 
whatever may be y e necessity for force as matters now 
stand, there is not a civil magistrate in that country who 
will ever call in y e aid of y e military. That an army so 
constituted wou'd answer all y e possible use of defence in 
all ordinary cases & wou'd of course be increas'd as y e case 
of danger encreas'd to all possible extraordinary cases. 

III. That there was another point w ch he wou'd 

take up, not as a point so much respecting y e constitution 
as matter of expediency & effect in practice, respecting 
Colony administration. And that was the false policy of 
y e establishment of a revenue board out of y e realm. He 
explain'd y e reason of all y e difficulties this board mett 
w th , of y e inconveniency, defect, & danger of it, & then 
pointed out that the right step w d be to throw the whole 
business of y e inspection & administration of y e laws of 
trade in the Colonies into the old known, wise & proper 
office of y e naval officer as y e deputy, subordinate to y e 
Governor who was primarily responsible for y e due ad- 
ministration thereof. That this office thus subordinate 
to, & deriving y e power of its execution from y e Govern- 
or & y e jurisdiction of y e Province or Colony, wou'd act 
under & with & be aided by the interior powers of the 
civil jurisdiction within which it was plac'd, wou'd there 
become effective & effectual & give vigour to y e regulations 
of y e American trade in its due subordination to that of y e 
mother country, instead of exacting by force ab extra a 
rigorous execution of points w ch only distress it. 

Indorsed, "Mem of a Conversation between Gov r Pownall & Lord North, 
June 5, 1770, refer' 1 to in M* Pown l ' s letter dated July 14, 1770." 

1770.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 203 


(Duplicate, with P. S. added.) 

Fludyer Street, July 16 th , 1770. 

Sir, — Inclosed you receive an act of Parliament passed 
in the late session for incouraging plantation indico, 
which contains a clause respecting the fees of the officers 
of the customs & the naval officers. This clause was in- 
troduced when the House of Comons was siting in a 
coihittee of the whole House. When introduced it was 
perpetual, and much contended for to continue so by a 
minister 1 member, with some others of the same side ; 
but being opposed, chiefly by the Lord May r & two other 
members of my acquaintance, one of whom, tho' he often 
votes with the ministry, opposed this totis viribus, it was 
render'd temporary, as you will find it. 

Divers persons having on different days been lately 
examined on oath by the Privy Council touching certain 
proceedings at Boston, many supposed this was done with 
intent to lay a foundation of some adverse measures to be 
pursued against the Province, or that town in particular, 
or both, some supposing that an attempt would be made 
to repeal your Charter ; others that milit ry forces wou'd 
be employ'd to curb & humble the capital til the con- 
sideration of Parliament cou'd be had. Being indisposed 
during the chief part of these motions by the hurts 
received from a fall, I was obliged to some of my friends 
for information. On the 9 th inst* a gentleman who re- 
ceived his intelligence in such a manner as render'd it 
probable, for what is certain is become very rare, came & 
told me that some severe measures proposed by Lord H. 
had been rejected by the far greater part of the Council. 
Two days afterw ds a worthy gentleman inform'd me the 
min ry had determined naval & land forces shou'd be col- 
lected & sent to Boston ; the latter shou'd enter the town, 


& remain there til Parliamentary measures shou'd be 
taken. Alarm' d by these proceedings, on Friday, the 
13 th , I went to the Plantation Office, and desiring to speak 
with the Secry, saw him, & spake briefly to him concern- 
ing this matter ; but being extremely busy, he appointed 
me to come there to-day, tho' I press'd for the next day. 
However on that morning by a written message he let me 
know he was ready to see me ; whereupon going directly 
to him, I told him I had while indisposed received dis- 
agreeable advice, and mention'd the particulars. After 
civilly saying that if I cou'd not conveniently have come 
to him, he wou'd have come to me, he in strong terms 
declared against all intention of any proceeding against 
your Charter ; as to other measures he seem'd rather 
enclined to soften the account of matters than to be at 
all explicit, which I imputed to the nature of his office & 
of the measures themselves, with the disposition of the 
times. After saying I was by nature & policy averse to 
severities, I observed that violence begat violence, and 
mentioned the late military violence ; that an angry cause 
required temper for its management ; that severities 
against a part wou'd make a coiiion cause, and that there 
was no difference to this kingdom between losing the 
Colonies & losing the benefit of them, to which severities 
tended. I am, with all due respect, Sir, 

Your most obedient & most humble servant. 


P. S. In the course of the debate touching the above- 
men^ clause, it was said, without being gainsaid, that it 
originated in a design to regulate the port of Boston. 

The IIon» le Sam*- Danforth, Esq r . 

1770.] THOMAS POWNALL. 205 

(Private.) London, July 21, 70. 

D B Sir, — Enclosed with this I send you a letter which 
I have written that you may communicate as circum- 
stances & prudence may best direct. In the first place to 
those friends of y e Province who are your freinds, or to 
those in general who are really freinds of Liberty. There 
are amongst some, some fals freinds who keep up corre- 
spondencies here with people that you little suspect. It 
would therefore be wise to form a circle of a few that 
can be trusted with confidential communication. I beg 
my respect to y e Speaker, to M r Hancock, M r Adams, & 
all those particularly who were my friends when I was in 
the Province. I am, d r Sir, 

Y r affiec* freind & ser. 



London, July 21, '70. 

D R Sir, — I have in all my letters very distinctly 
marked the ground which Ministry mean to take in their 
dealings with the Americans, but especially with Boston 
& the Province Massachusetts Bay. You also are ap- 
prized in general of y e evidence & y e nature of it by which 
they attempt to establish that ground. You have also 
very explicitly been informed of y e measures which are to 
be taken on that ground. Permitt me in this letter 
(which you may communicate to particular friends) to 
suggest what grounds you ought to take on your parts. 

As soon as this arrives, if you have not done it before, 
you ought to apply by petition or otherwise to y e Governor 
to call y e General Court to sitt forthwith. You ought to 
take up y e consideration of the defense which the Prov- 


ince (as a corporation) ought to be ready prepared with, 
in case the Charter should be attacked in the courts of 
law. You ought forthwith to prepare such matters for 
explanation, information, and defense as may be applyed 
by your friends, if the Province & its Charter is attacked 
in Parliament. 

You ought forthwith to appoint agents (not one, but 
more as you will see presently) with proper comissions & 
powers for y e purposes following. I have for a long time 
& very maturely, at my leisure, considered your situation ; 
& I think you ought to appoint three agents or commis- 
sioners jointly under the same commission, — two from 
within y e Province to be joined with one here who knows 
the way of persons & things here. That one ought to be 
in Parliament, so as that he may in his place do what will 
then become his duty to do, defend your cause as your 
representative there. I have said three from y e apprehen- 
sion that if two should differ your business might not be 
at a stand ; but if you could find two persons who were in 
real freindly communication, were of y e same sentiments, 
& as equally in your confidence as one of your own cor- 
poration & one not of it can be, two such w d do better. 
If it were possible to persuade M r Bowdoin to undertake 
this commission, I know one here who would, without 
anj' pay, salary, or appointment whatever, be ready to be 
joined with him, & would act unitedly and confidentially 
with him in every matter that concerned your cause. 
Two such would do better than more ; but upon this point 
you must consult among yourselves. 

The next point respects y e commissions I think your 
comissioners or agents should have two different commis- 
sions (all jointly appointed in each), one solely for y e pur- 
pose of conducting your affairs in the courts of law; 
another for the management of your affairs with govern- 
ment & in Parliament. The first ought either to appoint 
these commissioners as your lawfull attorneys, such as a 

1770.] THOMAS POWNALL. 207 

corporation is bound to have appear for it, or to empower 
them to appoint such. These commissioners ought to 
have power to retain & employ counsell, &c., & to do 
every act & deed in y e name of y e corporation which shall 
become necessary in a course of law, liable to such in- 
structions as you may think wise & prudent to direct or 
restrain said commissioners by. The other commission 
ought to contain power to petition or remonstrate on one 
or all matters of greivance or complaint which you may 
direct them, either by y e commission itself or by instruc- 
tions, to exhibit & prosecute. As it is impossible for y e 
Province (so farr removed from persons & things here) to 
judge what may, and what may not with best improve- 
ment & success be brought forward at one time or at 
another as persons, ministries, & various connections shall 
vary & change, your commissioners ought by their com- 
missions, if possible, if not so yet by their instructions, to 
be duely authorised & impowered to exhibit each matter 
& thing separately & by itself, so as that it may be in their 
power to treat of & negotiate upon any one matter (inde- 
pendent of others) & of such from time to time as opor- 
tunity offerrs or occasion calls for, or aid & assistance can 
be obtained thereupon. These several matters may pos- 
sibly be comprised under these different heads, — matters 
respecting taxation & revenue laws ; the establishment of 
y e military ; the establishment of commissioners & other 
officers of exterior revenue ; all matters respecting your 
charter rights, your jurisdiction, & your Province as a 
corporation ; all matters respecting the general rights 
of American colonists (independent of, & even upon y e 
supposition of y e dissolution of. Charters) such as their 
right to be formed into a community (when without y e 
realm) with interior powers of government & all other 
jurisdictions necessary to a free community. 

Both the commissions & all y e separate setts of in- 
structions ought to be under y e great seal of the Province. 




This done, you ought to appoint by election or otherwise 
a standing comittee to correspond with your agents or 
commissioners with full powers as to y e matters on which 
they are empowerd to correspond. All these matters 
ought to be done directly & without loss of time, that 
whatever measures you agree upon to be pursued here 
may be settled & known here by your agents or commis- 
sioners some months before y e sitting of Parliament, so 
that all proper communication & correction may be pre- 
pared previous to y e sessions, & previous to the .erms in y e 
law courts. 

Whether my advice will be approved or not, I think it 
not only y e best, but absolutely necessary for y e Province, 
& therefore from a sincere affection to it, I have com- 
municated & written it, liberavi animam meam. After this 
I have nothing left but my warm & sincere wishes for y e 
Province & all my freinds in it. I am, d r Sir, 
Yours most affectionately. 


The Hon blk James Bowdoin, Esq e . 


London, July 21, '70. 

D R Sir, — This with all my other letters will be deliv- 
er'd to you by Commodore Gambire, between whom & 
yourself I should be happy to form a communication of 
friendship. He wishes it, & not only on your own ac- 
count, but on that of your country, you will be happy to 
have formd & cultivated such friendship. Whatever y e 
orders & instructions are that he may receive he must 
execute ; but in every thing which depends upon himself, 
& in y e mode of doing it, I know, not only from his own 
disposition, but from y e nature of his connections here, he 
comes with every disposition to befriend y e town & Prov- 

1770.] THOMAS POWNALL. 209 

ince, wishes to be well with y e people, desires me to make 
him so, wishes to render his command (as it ought to be) 
a benefit & advantage to trade & commerce, & not a dis- 
tress to & oppression of it. This is disposition which the 
friends of y e Province & of Liberty ought to cultivate & 
improve. Upon these grounds I beg to bring you to- 
gather. I know when once you are acquainted you will 
not want my recommendation to each other's friendship. 

Many attempts & endeavours by malicious publications 
& otherwise have been made to create prejudices against 
him, to render him obnoxious to y e Provinces & thus to sett 
him out on bad ground with them. He has always so 
conducted himself in y e service that even y e most mali- 
cious have nothing to reproach him with but with an act 
that was not his own ; the affair of burning y e house at 
Halifax & y e pressing y e householder. This was done at 
y e absolute & peremptory orders of the late Admiral Bos- 
cawen* The Admiral paid all y e costs & damages, & so 
farr was Cap* Gambire from having any personal share 
in y e severity of the order that he even risqued his com- 
manding officer's displeasure by a lenity and tenderness 
of conduct in y e mode, for which the man who was y e ob- 
ject of it acknowledged every obligation to him publickly 
& repeatedly. Mention y e affair yourself to the Commo- 
dore, I am sure he only wishes an opportunity of having 
the real case known. I beg also to recommend M rs Gam- 
bire to the acquaintance of your family. She is I find a 
relation of y e Temples or y e Shirley s. I am, d r Sir, 
Y r friend & serv. 

To y b Hon ble James Bowdoin, Esq*. 

* "While at Halifax in 1758, acting under orders from Boscawen, he [Gambier] de- 
stroyed a number of pestilent liquor sheds, and pressed the sutlers — a piece of good ser- 
vice which afterwards caused him much annoyance, some of the sutlers prosecuting him at 
common law, against which he was still, two years later, claiming the protection of the 
admiralty." See Dictionary of National Biography, vol. xx. p. 393. — Eds. 




Halifax, August 7 th , 1770. 

I am exceedingly obliged, my dear Sir, for your kind 
favour of the 7 th , as I also am in a very particular man- 
ner, for your great readiness in using your influence for 
compromising the affair between M r Peacock & Ryan, on 
the plan I proposed, but as it is rejected by Ryan, but on 
terms not possible to be complied with, M r Peacock must 
submit to what the Law shall decree, and I now send a 
cook to the Hussar. 

My successor to the naval command in this country is 
M r Gambier,* who I am afraid will not be here till the 
middle of next month at soonest, which will probably 
subject M rs Hood to a rough, when we flattered ourselves 
with having a summer's, passage. I expected to be 
home in all this month, but as the old saying is, what 
can't be cured must be endured. Have you, my good Sir, 
any command to England in my power to execute ? if 
you have, I shall obey them with real pleasure, if you 
will give me leave ; and I shall ever be glad to hear of 
the health and welfare of you & your family. I shall be 
no longer a Commodore than the clay of my arrival at 
Spithead. S. Hood Esq r Portsmouth, Hampshire, is my 
address as a private gentleman. 

M rs Hood joins me in best & warmest wishes to you 
& M rs Bowdoin, and I desire you will remember me 
very kindly to Cap* Erving 

I am, with great regard & esteem, my dear Sir, 
Your ever faithfull and obedient humble servant 

Sam. Hood. 

The Hon ble J s Bowdoin, Esq r . Boston. 

* See note, /Jos/, p. 285. —Eds. 

1770.] SAMUEL HOOD. 211 


Halifax, Sept r 7 th , 1770. 

Deae Sir, — I want words to express my concern at 
the disturbance which happened on the 29 th past, by an 
attempt to impress a man from a coasting vessel, which 
is directly contrary to my orders, and though the officer of 
the Viper informs me that he did not mean to impress, 
but only to recover a man who owned himself a deserter, 
I disapprove of his conduct exceedingly, and am sorry the 
smallest opposition is encouraged by the masters of the 
coasting vessels to the King's officers, when they must be 
all sensible that if a man is at any time taken by an 
officer who may be led to it from his desire of keeping 
his Majesty's ship to which he belongs in condition for 
service with respect to men, he will be immediately 
discharged on any application to the commanding officer 
at the port of Boston, and I beg to assure you, Sir, that the 
coasting trade shall not be molested, but encouraged and 
protected to the utmost, while I have the honor to com- 
mand his Majesty's squadron in these seas.* The experi- 
ence I have had of your moderation and love of order 
induces me to trouble you at this time, well knowing you 
will spare no pains to keep the minds of the people as 
quiet as possible. I have yet no account of the appoint- 
ment of my successor, so that I fear I shall not see my 
native country so soon as I wish. M rs Hood joins me in 

* The Massachusetts Gazette of Sept. 20, 1770, contains the following paragraph, which 
was immediately copied into the other Boston papers: — "We are informed from good 
Authority, that Commodore Hood at Halifax has expressed great displeasure at the late 
attempt to impress a man from a coasting vessel coming into this harbour: From the same 
Authority we can assure the public, that the coasting trade shall not be molested, but en- 
couraged and protected to the utmost while the Commodore has the command of his 
Majesty's squadron in these seas." We have not been able to find in any of the Boston 
newspapers of the time an account of this " attempt to impress." — Eds. 


best compliments to your whole family. I am. my dear 

Your most obedient and faitlifull humble servant, 

Sam. Hood. 
I beg to be remembered to Cap* Erving. 
The Hon ble James Bowdoin. 


Boston, Oct<> 22*, 1770. 

Dear S r , — My last, w ch I think went r Scott, & of 
w ch you do not make mention, acknowledged y e rec* of 
your two favors dated in April last. It was principally 
to thank you for y e bill for regulating controverted trials 
of election & your observations thereon, and particularly 
to thank you in y e name of y e Kennebeck Co. for your 
attention to y e affair of their appeal, w ch you thought w d 
not be heard y e 11 th of June, though that was y e day 
appointed for it. We have not heard any thing from M r 
Goosetree lately concerning it. It will much oblige y e 
Co. (if y r engagements in more important business 
will permit it) to know from you y e present state of y e 
appeal, & when tis probable judgment will be given on 
it. If there had been a possibility of setling this matter 
here, y e Co. w d have chosen that it should have been done. 
The land in controversy is no object with them ; the 
expence of attending it is greater than it is all worth. 
They must have relinquished a very considerable part of 
their patent, if they had acquiesced in y e final judgment 
here. This obliged them to petition for liberty to appeal ; 
and if y e event should be favorable to them it will be 
equally beneficial to y e people that live within y e limits 
of y e s d patent by quieting them in their settlem ts and 
preventing a great number of interfering Indian claims, 
which at present lie dormant, from ruining them. 

1770.] JAMES BOWDOLN". 213 

I have rec d your letters of the following dates, viz., 
May 11 th & one dated June; both of them directed to y e 
Boston Com tees , also duplicate & triplicate of y e latter. 
These letters have been communicated to y e s d Com tees . I 
have also rec d those of July 7, 10, 14, & 21. Several of 
these letters contain very important information & ad- 
vice. I have coihunicated them to y e Boston Rep s and 
such others of the House as I thought would make a good 
use of them ; and they will be a good guide to direct 
their measures, with regard to which they are not yet 
perfectly agreed. Some talk of petitioning y e King ; 
some of remonstrating to Parliament on y e subject of our 
grievances ; and some few are for doing neither, as all our 
petitions & remonstrances and those of the other Colonies 
have been treated with such neglect & contempt. What 
you recommend in one of your letters, to act offensively 
instead of y e contrary, and to attack Ministry in Parlia- 
ment for y e grievances brot. upon us by the extraordinary 
measures they have taken, struck me at first as y e best 
thing that could be done, and it may be so. But what 
arises as a difficulty is, that Ministry have taken y e pre- 
caution to get all their measures approbated & adopted 
by Parliament ; so that to complain of them is a virtual 
complaining of Parliament, which, however just, would 
probably only serve to raise their resentment. Nothing 
will or indeed can well be concluded on till another 
business previous in its nature, and about which there are 
contrary sentiments, is setled, viz., whether there shall be 
an agent. The Council early in y e present session, w ch 
commenced y e 26 th ult°, sent a message to y e House signi- 
fying to them their readiness to join with y e House in y e 
choice of an agent ; and have several times since repeated 
that message ; but it has not yet worked any visible 
effect. A number of y e House, & some of them leading 
members, are against appointing any agent ; apprehend- 
ing it to no purpose to endeavour y e altering of measures 


already resolved on by those who appear to have an un- 
controulable influence over Parliament. A few days will 
determine this matter in y e House, probably in favor of 
appointing an agent, — an agent for y e House only; for 
there is undoubtedly a considerable majority in favor of 
such a seperate appointment in case it is determined that 
there should be an agent. The Council are very desirous 
that an agent should be appointed by both Houses, & 
that their present agent, M r Bollan, should be y e man, 
who, if y e House refuse a junction, will be continued agent 
for y e Council. Your attention to American affairs, and 
those of this Province in particular, manifested by your 
speeches in Parliament ; the concern you express in your 
letters for our rights & liberties, and your endeavours to 
prevent any infraction upon them, intitle you to the 
thanks of y e Province. As an individual you will please 
to accept mine. I agree with you it would be a good 
measure that y e Province sh d have two com" or agents if 
their sentiments harmonized, and it would give me great 
pleasure to see you and our friend Doctor Franklin in 
that relation to the Province. There are divers other 
gent n talked of, particularly Serjeant Glyn & D r Leigh, said 
to be y e author of y e pieces signed Junius Americanus.* 

The measures of Ministry relative to this Province 
which you mention as conjectural will probably prove 
realities ; for several of them, viz., the removing of y e 
Provincial garrison from Castle William & garrisoning 
it with y e 14 th regiment, and y e making y e harbour of 

* Arthur Lee. He was born in Westmoreland county, Virginia, Dec. 20, 1740, was 
educated in England and Scotland, and received the degree of M. D. from the University 
of Edinburgh. Returning to America, lie practised his profession for a short time in Vir- 
ginia, and then went again to England, where he studied law, and was admitted to the bar. 
He was author of the letters signed "Junius Americanus," and of numerous other political 
writings. In 1770 he was appointed by the House of Representatives of Massachusetts 
their agent in England, to act in case of the absence or death of Dr. Franklin. Subse- 
quently he served in various diplomatic capacities on the Continent of Europe, and was 
involved in some unfortunate disputes with his colleagues in Paris. In 1780 he returned 
home, and was afterward elected to Congress, and served from 1784 to 1789 on the Treasury 
Board. He died in Virginia, Dec. 12, 1792. See R. H. Lee's Life of Arthur Lee. — Eds. 



Boston y e rendezvous of men of war, are already carried 
into execution. On y e 10 th of Sept. with great secresy 
Col Dalrymple, whose regiment ever since March last 
had been quartered in y e barracks on Castle Island, took 
possession of y e Castle by virtue of an order from y e 
L* Gov r to Cap* Phillips, who had no previous intimation 
of it whatever, & who imediately surrendered y e Castle 
with all its appurtenances to Col Dairy mple. On y e same 
day and about y e time of taking possession y e 1/ Gov r 
called a Council, and read to them several parts of a 
letter to him from Lord Hillsboro dated y e 7 th of July 
last, and enclosing y e report of a com tee of y e Privy Council 
with his Majesty's order in Council thereon. Agreable 
to y e s d report his Majesty is pleased to order that y e 
harbour of Boston should be y e rendezvous of his ships of 
war in North America & that y e Provincial garrison at y e 
Castle should be removed, &c, as above. The s d report 
also takes notice that there is no civil magistracy here, 
and therefore recomends to his M ty to lay before Parlia- 
ment y e state of this Province, that further measures 
may be taken. These measures are probably such as you 
conjecture have been resolved on, viz., the vacating y G 
Charter in whole or part ; at least so far as relates to y e 
Council and (as other letters mention) y e sending more 
regiments here. It might be expected from y e wisdom 
and justice of Parliament, that before any thing further 
be decreed against us we should be informed of what we 
stand charged with, and heard in our defence. The said 
report contains a number of reasons on which y e measures 
recommended in it are grounded. But a copy of it, not- 
withstanding repeated applications for it, is refused the 
two Houses by y e L fc Gov r , who says he has an instruction 
not to give us a copy of it, or communicate it by any 
speech or message or in any way whereby it may be made 
public, by which means we are unable to make any de- 
fence. I heard y e report read, but do not retain it suffi- 


ciently to give you y e reasons mentioned in it : otherwise I 
might probably make some observations on them. Would 
it be just that an individual accused should be condemned 
unheard, even if it were known his accusers had no enmity 
or prejudice against him ? If it would not, can it be just 
that a whole community should be so condemned, espe- 
cially too when their accusers, or those that are called to 
give testimony against them, are known to be not only 
prejudiced, but in a high degree inimical to them ? We 
are informed the testimonies on w ch y e s d report is founded 
were those of Sir Fra 8 Bernard, M r Robinson, M r Harri- 
son, and others equally unfriendly to y e town of Boston 
& y e Province, aided by y e Commissioners and other per- 
sons here, whose letters and y e depositions accompanying 
them are apprehended to have co-operated with those 
testimonies. It is not foreign from this subject to men- 
tion a deposition of Sec ry Oliver, containing his minutes 
of what he represents was said in Council y e 6 th of March, 
and adopted by them, that there was a plan laid by 
people of y e best character here to remove y e troops & 
Com rs , and this previous to y e unhappy affair of y e 5 th of 
March. This deposition is published with others annexed 
to a pamphlet printed in London & intitled " A fair 
Account of y e Disturbances at Boston." The eight coun- 
cellors present at that Council have given their depositions 
concerning what was then said, and a com tee of Council 
have since drawn up a state of that matter, and made 
some observations thereon, which will be reported to- 
morrow. From y e s d state (now before me) I send you 
enclosed y e resolutions w ch y e com tee think y e honor of y e 
Council requires they should come into. Soon after y e s d 
pamphlet arrived here y e s d deposition taken from it was 
published in one of the Boston newspapers. To allay y e 
Sec ry ' s uneasiness at this, y e L fc Gov r informed y e Council 
that it was at his request y e s d deposition was taken. & 
that he sent it to a i^rent" to be made use of in case it sh d 


1770.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 217 

be necessary to justify him for desiring Col Dalrymple to 
remove y e troops from the town, and he afterwards men- 
tioned (as he said he w d not conceal any thing from y e 
Council) that he had sent it to S r Fra s Bernard. 

I herewith send you a pamphlet in w ch is collected to- 
gether all that passed at y e first session of this year 
between y e 1/ Gov r & y e two Houses on y e subject of 
Gen 1 Courts sitting out of Boston. These proceedings 
the newspapers have furnished you with seperately, as 
well as with what passed between y e L* Gov r & the House 
at y e 2 d session. At the second session, as y e L fc Gov r 
persevered in his former sentiments, and in his speech 
laboured y e subject, the Council shewed a disposition to 
make an answer to his speech, and by a considerable 
majority appointed a com tee for that purpose. They re- 
ported an answer ; but by tampering and management 
the consideration of it was postponed from time to time 
till y e Court was prorogued. The Council were equally 
divided on y e question, ten against ten. Your quondam 
Sec ry at War preserved a consistence of character on this 
occasion, — a meer Proteus. For y r amusement I send 
you y e answer as reported. In y e present session of y e 
Gen 1 Court it was some time before y e House agreed to go 
upon business. Soon after they resolved upon it they 
entered on y e enquiry whether Castle W m still continued 
under y e command of y e L* Gov r . What has passed 
between him & y e House on that head the public papers 
will inform you. Your observations relative to y e com- 
mand of our Provincial forts are very just. The 1/ Gov r ' s 
answer does not appear satisfactory. He repeatedly 
declared on y e 6 th of March, when he was solicited to 
order y e troops out of town, that he had no authority 
over them. Their being at y e Castle does not subject 
them to his authority, and we do not learn he has since 
rec d any new authority ; therefore it is probable, now they 
have got possession of y e Castle, they do and will hold it 


independent of him. The Charter would weigh little 
with General Gage to restore y e Castle, even if urged by 
y e L l Gov 1 ", unless there were other reasons to induce him 
to it. But y e Charter ought constitutionally to subject 
Gen 1 Gage with all y e King's troops, while within the 
Province, to the command of the Governor of the Pro- 
vince. The Charter, as affairs are now managed, is as 
inoperative as it would be if vacated. 

On y e 10 th inst fc arrived here Commodore Gambier, by 
whom I had y e pleasure of receiving your letters. Capt. 
Erving, D r Cooper, and myself have been together and 
paid our compliments to y e Commodore. From y e char- 
acter you give of him, I doubt not we shall be very happy 
in him, and that y e town & trade in general will experi- 
ence him to be a good officer. I have shewn your letter to 
a number of persons that his character might be known ; 
& that y e Halifax affair you mention might be set right 
by y r representation of it.* The minds of people are so 
agitated by y e treatment they have had, and by y e further 
hostile measures intended against them, that they cannot 
receive with complacency (however deserving in them- 
selves) the persons that are to carry those measures into 

In a day or two Capt. Preston's trial is to come on. 
Notwithstanding y e opinion of many on your side y e 
water, arising from misrepresentations from hence, I 
doubt not he will have as fair & impartial a trial here as 
he could have under like circumstances at Westminster 
Hall. His innocence, if it be made appear, will be his 
protection as much here as there. Scott will sail in a 
few days. If any thing turns up worth communicating I 
shall do myself y e pleasure of writing to you by him : in 
y e mean time I am, with great esteem, 

Y r9 , & c . 

* See ante, p. 209. — Eds. 

1770.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 219 


Boston, Nov r 2 d , 1770. 
S r , — By this ship, Capt. Lyde, I have wrote you a long 
letter, dated y e 22 d Oct°, since which y e House of Rep s 
have chosen (viz., on y e 25 Oct ) our worthy friend D r 
Franklin their agent ; and on y e 31 st they chose D r Leigh 
their agent in the absence of D r Franklin. Their further 
measures are not yet ripened into act. The Council ac- 
cepted y e report of y e com tee relative to the Secretary, & 
came into y e resolutions recoihended in y e report. This 
proceeding of y e Council y e 1/ Gov r prophecies will 
operate more strongly to procure an alteration in y e con- 
stitution of y e Council than any thing they have ever be- 
fore done. All the papers that relate to this matter are 
with others sent to M r Bollan by this opportunity. Capt. 
Preston's trial continued five days. He has been ac- 
quitted, & was immediately liberated. 'Tis not doubted 
he himself will allow that y e proceedings in his affair 
discovered no partiality to his prejudice. Please to pre- 
sent my best regards to D r Franklin, w ch you'll please 
also to accept from 

S r , Y r most obed*. 


Order of Council on Sec ry Oliver's petition presented 
y e 29 th of October, 1770, viz. 

In Council, November 14, 1770. Ordered that W m 
Brattle, James Bowdoin, Sam 1 Dexter, John Bradbury, & 

* This report is now printed from the original rough draught in the handwriting of James 
Bowdoin. It was printed at the time in the "Proceedings of his Majesty's Council of the 
Province of Massachusetts-Bay, relative to the Deposition of Andrew Oliver, Esq., 
Secretary of the said Province," which, b}' a vote of the House of Representatives, was 
ordered to be transmitted to the Agent of the House in England, and also to " be printed 
as an Appendix to the Journals of this House." It is referred to so often in the letters now 
printed, that it has been thought best to insert it here. — Eds. 


Stephen Hall, Esq", be a Com* 66 to take the foregoing pe- 
tition into consideration & report what they think proper 
for the Board to do thereon. 

John Cotton, Deputy Sec ry . 

The Com tee on the Secretary's petition of y e 29 th of Oct 
have taken y e same into consideration, and have made 
the following observations thereon which are submitted 
to the Hon ble Board. 

W M Brattle, p r order of y e Com tee . 

Nov 15, 1770. 

The Secretary's last petition to y e Hon ble Board begins 
with shewing " that it so hapned he had no opportunity 
to see y e report of your Com tee and y r Honors' resolutions 
thereon until some time after they had passed y e Board." 
On which your Com tee would observe that if the Sec ry had 
thought proper he might have been present, as his Dep- 
uty actually was, at y e time y e s d report was made, and 
while it was under consideration, which would have given 
him a full knowledge of its contents. But his knowing 
it was no wise necessary to y e Board's passing upon it, 
as y e examination of y e evidences on both sides, and in his 
presence, had been had some time before, agreable to his 
petition, and as y e s d report, besides a summary of the 
evidence and one or two incidental circumstances, con- 
tained nothing but y e Com tee ' s observations on that evi- 
dence & the resolutions they recommended to y e consider- 
ation of the Board. They would further observe that 
y e Board make no secret of any of their proceedings, 
which, however, in this case they might have justly done, 
as the Secretary in a secret manner took minutes of what 
he represents had been said in Council, and in a secret 
manner gave his deposition concerning it, and will doubt- 
less in a secret manner, at least without y e knowledge of 
y e Board, make representations on y e subject of their pro- 
ceedings in his affair, which if right or wrong the Board 


for that reason can neither acquiesce in or detect. On this 
occasion the Com tee cannot omit taking notice of what his 
Honor y e L* Gov r observed in Council upon the said report, 
a few days after its acceptance by the Board, viz., that 
y e King had a right to know all that is at any time said 
or done in y e Privy Council considered either as a body 
or as individuals ; that y e calling in question this right 
would operate to y e prejudice of y e Province more than 
any thing that had been yet done ; and that y e Sec ry did his 
duty in taking minutes and conducting as he did. As to 
y e former part of this declaration that the King had a 
right to know what passed at y e Privy Council, it is 
granted, and has never been called in question by the 
Council, either in y e report aforesaid or in any of their 
proceedings. The King has not only a right to know, 
but in fact may be said to know, whatever passes in 
Privy Council, even at y e time of its passing, his Majesty 
being a constituent part of every Privy Council, and 
always present by his representative. There is nothing 
in y e s d report which can justly be construed to call in 
question that right. If such a construction has been 
given to any part of it, it is forced and unnatural, and 
which the Board wholly disavow. They do not therefore 
apprehend that it can in y e least degree operate to the 
prejudice of y e Province in any respect whatever, and 
they humbly rely on his Majesty's justice and goodness 
that no such operation will be y e effect of it. If his 
Honor had pointed out y e clause capable of such a con- 
struction, they would have rec d it as an instance of his 
regard to y e Province & to them. As to y e last part of 
y e declaration that y e Sec" 7 did his duty in taking minutes 
and conducting as he did, the Com tee think it needless to 
say any thing on this head, as the contrary is fully proved 
in the report aforesaid. 

The Sec ry in y e s d petition takes exception to two clauses 
of y e s d report, the first only of which needs to be noticed. 


It runs thus, — " The Sec ry himself has lately declared 
before y e Board that he did not conceive M r Tyler to 
mean such a preconcerted plan, and that he never 
believed any such plan had been formed." The Sec ry di- 
vides this clause into two parts, and makes observations 
on each. One of the observations is, that no one gentle- 
man at y e Board would undertake to say that y e expres- 
sion was precisely as abovementioned ; and another is, 
that he would by no means be understood even to insin- 
uate that y e " Hon ble Board meant to put any unjust colour- 
ing upon his declarations." The words whatever y y w r ere 
w r ere spoken by y e Sec ry before y e Board, not in conversa- 
tion with any of the members, but by way of observation 
on one of y e papers in his affair that had been just read to 
y e Board. Now, although no one gentleman at y e Board 
would undertake to give the precise words used by y c 
Sec ry on that occasion, yet divers of them at y e time he 
first mentioned this matter to y e Board, and many of 
them since, have declared, and they do declare, that what 
he said conveyed to them y e same idea as y e words made 
use of in y e report and above quoted do convey. And 
notwithstanding y e Sec ry insinuates, what he says he 
would by no means insinuate, " that y e Board meant to 
put an unjust colouring on his declarations," yet y e Board 
are wholly clear of that charge, and meant to represent 
truly what y c Sec ry said, which they still think they have 
done, although it may not be in y e precise w r ords spoken 
by him. But it is of so little importance whether y e de- 
claration above quoted w^as made or not, that y e Board 
would have suffered the Sec ry ' s explanation of himself to 
have passed unremarked on, if it had not been attended 
with an implied reflection upon their veracity. 

The Sec ry ' 8 petition mentions further that he did not 
know that his own deposition containing his secret minutes 
aforesaid was ever sent to England until he saw it in 
y e pamphlet he refers to. Though y e Sec ry did not (strictly 


speaking) know that his s d deposition had been sent to 
England, he could have no sufficient reason to doubt it. 
At y e time he delivered his deposition to y e L* Gov r , and 
also when his Honor applied to him for it, it is probable 
he was informed for what purposes it was wanted. But 
admitting he was not, it would be a reflection upon his 
understanding to suppose he could have any doubt that 
y e deposition was intended to be sent to England. His 
saying, therefore, he did not know it had been sent, is 
neither a proof that he did not know it was intended to 
be sent, nor any justification of himself for delivering it, 
especially as it was clone without giving y e gentlemen 
whom it respected, and whose character, as well as that 
of the Province, was essentially affected thereby, the 
least notice of it. 

The Sec ry ' s petition further mentions, that " as y e Board 
expected him to observe upon these two points only (con- 
tained in y e two clauses above referred to) he will add 
nothing with regard to y e other parts of y e report or 
y e resolves of y e Board in consequence of it, except that 
he is not convinced that he has done any thing inconsis- 
tent with y e character of a man of honor, or been guilty 
of any breach of trust." It is to be observed here, that 
when the Sec ry mentioned to the Board the said two 
clauses, he excepted to no other part of y e report, and 
when y e Board consented he should explain himself by 
something written upon them, he said he should confine 
himself to those clauses only, w ch was acquiesced in. He 
was not limited to them by y e Board, and the suggestion 
that he was so limitted is without foundation. 

As to what y e Sec ry says, that he is not convinced he 
has done any thing inconsistent with the character of a 
man of honour, or been guilty of any breach of trust, the 
Com tee would only remark, that although the Secretary's 
general character may be consistent with y e character of 
a man of honour, yet what he has done with regard to his 




minutes and deposition aforesaid is in y e whole of it 
altogether inconsistent with that character, and clearly 
involves in it a breach of trust : all which is sufficiently 
manifest by y e report aforesaid. 

In Council, Nov r 16, 1770. 

Read & accepted and ordered that an authenticated copy 
of the Secretary's petition and of this report thereon be 
transmitted to M r Agent Bollan to be made use of for 
y e benefit of y e Province, as occasion shall offer. 


Sir, — The present session of the G. Court began the 
26 th of Sept. last. The Council, sensible of what impor- 
tance it was to the Province that (at this time in par- 
ticular) there should be a Provincial agent, very early in 
the session unanimously voted that we were ready to joyn 
with the House in the choice of one. This vote was sent 
down for concurrence, but unhappily it was not concurred, 
which obliged the Council to do the next best thing, to 
chuse an agent for themselves. This was done, & at a 
very full Board, you was unanimously chosen their agent. 
The House also voted that they would chuse an agent for 
themselves ; & they made choice of Doct. Franklin for 
theirs, with whom we doubt not you will correspond as 
the circumstances of the Province may require. We are 
extreamly sorry to find by your letter of the [blank'] & 
otherwise how unhappy the scituation of our publick 
affairs is on y e other side of the water, & that it is prob- 
able they will in the next session of Parliament be the 
subject matter of their inquiry, without our being noti- 
fyed to make answer to the charges exhibited against the 
Province or defending the Council in particular. This is 

* This letter is printed from a rough draught in an unknown hand, and with numerous 
corrections and interlineations in another hand; but it has the attestation of the Deputy 
Secretary. — Eds. 


so far from being constitutional, as that perfect innocence 
is no protection in such a case. But yet hard as it is, un- 
constitutional as it is, we make no doubt that it will be 
the case, unless your active vigorous efforts prevent it, 
which from the experience of your former services, we are 
very confident will not be wanting. 

On or about the 6 th of July last, it is very likely, you 
will find that a Committee of the Lords of Council for 
Plantation Affairs in their report, which was accepted by 
the Lords of Council, the following advice was given to his 
Majesty, that Castle W m should be taken into his own hands, 
& garrisoned by his own troops, which hath been since done ; 
the castle delivered up, Capt. Phillips, the officers & privates 
sent off, & now entirely in the hands of the regulars ; that 
the place of rendevous for the King's ships in North 
America should be at Boston. Accordingly Commodore 
Hood came from Halifax with his squadron. He was soon 
releived by the arrival of Commodore Gambier. And 
now in a time of profound peace we have a greater 
number of men-of-war in the harbour of Boston than was 
known in a time of war since the first settlement of the 
country. The following charges were likewise reported, 
& accepted by the Lords of Council, requesting his Majesty 
to lay the same before the Parliament at their next ses- 
sion, really, that our constitution might be essentially 
altered, viz : 

That seditious & libellous publications are encouraged 
& go unpunished, manifesting a design to stir up the 
people to acts of violence & opposition to the laws & to 
the authority of Parliament : 

Goods liable to duties forcibly landed without paying 
those duties. Lawful seizures rescued by force. Officers 
abused & treated with violence whilst doing their duty. 
Illegal proceedings of the town of Boston in their meet- 
ings of June 13 th & Sept r I2 fch , 1768, and the convention 
at Boston Sept r 22 d : 



A combination not to import goods from England, & 
the several resolutions & proceedings in consequence 
thereof : 

The declarations & doctrines inculcated by the House 
of Representatives in their resolutions & messages to 
the Gover r . The instructions of Boston to their repre- 
sentatives : 

The Council disposed to adopt those principles & to 
countenance such illegal proceedings evidently manifested 
in their backwardness to join with the Governor in such 
measures as were necessary to prevent the same : 

Their meeting and acting as a Council of State without 
a summons from the Governor, and without his presence, 
and printing their resolutions. 

These are the charges we conjecture his Majesty by 
advice of Council will lay before the Parliament in their 
next session, & it is pretty certain the Lieut. Governor in 
a letter from the Earl of Hillsborough hath this account. 
A committee from the Council waited upon his Honor for 
a copy of the letter, report & order so far as it respected 
the rights of the Province & Council, but the Lieut. Gov- 
ernor told the committee that by his instruction he was 
strictly forbid giving one, or even to mention y m by speech 
or message to either House. 

These charges the Lords of Council have looked into & 
have adjudged to be facts. And therefore y e Parliament 
is only to determine the punishment. Such a conduct as 
this till of late is not to be paralleled ; how is English 
liberty lost, how precarious & uncertain is every man's 
liberty, property, & even his very life, for if they in this 
way can take away the former they may deprive us of the 
latter. They may as constitutionally determine that every 
member of his Majesty's Council hath been guilty of high 
treason, & then Parliament would make an act for y r pun- 
ishment. Surely upon application for time allowed us to 
answer they can't deny you, unless corruption reigns with- 


out controul. But still while we think of the election of a 
member for Middlesex we need fear every thing. Where- 
fore we will suggest a few things to you relative to the 
charges afores d , so far as the charges respect the Council, 
— we say, so far as they respect the Council, not because 
we suppose the other charges are true & not to be an- 
swered, but because the Council are not the proper persons 
to do it, & it might be taken amiss if we should. 

As to the 1 st , that seditious & libellous papers going un- 
punished, &c. ; allowing that to be the case, where doth 
the fault lye ? Not in the Council. Can they try & de- 
termine these matters ? In this way they have nothing 
to do with them. Why is there not a charge against the 
House of Lords (which is the sum ma curia) that they do 
not suppress those seditious & libellous publications at 
home ? If we have any amongst us there are 50 in Eng- 
land to one here. Must the English constitution then, so 
far as it relates to the House of Lords, be altered because 
they do not do that which by law they cannot do, & which 
if they did would be an infraction upon the constitutional 
rights of Englishmen ? If such publications have taken 
place here & no notice has been taken of them, where 
doth the fault lye ? Surely in him who acts for the 
King as his attorny in his not drawing indictments, sum- 
moning witnesses in support of the same, & then laying 
the whole before the grand jury ; & if he hath not done it, 
the fault is not the Council's, unless they had endeavoured 
to prevent him, which is very far from being the case, as 
will presently be shewn. It is very surprising that ad- 
ministration should think so highly of the few disorders 
amongst us when the provocations from themselves have 
been the sole cause of all. For us to be deprived of our 
rights, liberties & priviledges purchased & defended by our 
ancestors at the expence of so much treasure & blood & 
not by the Crown, purchased by them & granted to them 
as an inheritance. And in the struggle for the preserva- 


tion of them, if the people should have gone a little too 
far, ought there not have been an allowance made ? 
Surely they ought never to be magnified, nor would they 
be so by any but those who strain at a gnat & swallow a 
camel, who seek nothing so much as the distruction of an 
injured, abused Province at all adventures. As to the 
Council's being disposed to adopt those principles & coun- 
tenance such illegal proceedings, evidently manifested in 
their backwardness to joyn with the Governor in such 
measures as were necessary to restrain & suppress them, 
there is nothing that was ever invented more groundless. 
After his Honor, the Lieut. Governor, the Secretary, Judge 
Trowbridge & other very respectable gentlemen were left 
out of the Council, Governor Bernard apprehended that 
there was no duty, no loyalty left at the Council Board, & 
gave the prerogative up as lost, & this he often declared. 
We say, that after this there was a message to both 
Houses from the Governor relative to a libell against him 
published in one of the Boston newspapers. The House 
took it up for themselves. The mobbish Board, as 
he had represented them, chose a committee to take s d 
message under consideration. The committee reported as 
you will find in the loose paper No. 1, which was unani- 
mously accepted by the Council & presented by the Board 
to his Excellency as their answer to his message. Upon 
it the Governor was extreamly pleased & passed the high- 
est panegyricks upon the Council that could be passed, 
assuring them that he would write to the Secretary of 
State, that he might acquaint his Majesty with the loyalty, 
duty, & fidelity of his Council of the Mas. Bay.* And if 

* March 1, 17G8, Governor Bernard sent a message to the House of Representatives in 
which he said : — ''I have heen used to treat the publications in the Boston Gazette with 
the contempt they deserve; hut when they are carried to a length, which, if unnoticed, 
must endanger the very being of government, I cannot, consistently with the regard which 
I profess, and really have, for this Province, excuse myself from taking notice of a publica- 
tion in the Boston Gazette of yesterday; I have, therefore, consulted the Council thereupon, 
and have received their unanimous advice, that 1 should lay the said libellous paper before 
your House as well as their Board." The House declined to take any action in the matter, 


he was as good as his word he did it, & his letter may be 
produced. What he said of the Council then was strictly 
true. For could words express a greater abhorrence of 
that libel than that answer conveyed ? Could a Council 
that he is so fond of having now have done more than 
they then did ? Again, can this charge on the Council be 
true when he never once desired a proclamation might 
issue with advice of Council, with or without a reward, 
just as he was pleased to draw it or cause it to be drawn 
(for the Council never drew one), but what the Council 
advised to. In many cases this was done immediately 
upon his hearing the story, & if it was so far against the 
Province as that he could improve it to their prejudice he 
never wanted faith to beleive, for immediately there was 
a Council called, and advice moved for, that a proclama- 
tion might issue, & in many instances that the Attorny 
General should be directed to prosecute, & never once 

The Council in short were so desirous that his Majesty's 
honor & prerogative might be preserved, & so afraid that 
he should take exceptions at the conduct of the Council, 
that in sundry instances they went full far enough when 
they advised to issue proclamations, & at the same time 
the matter complained was scarcely worthy the notice 
of a single Justice of the Peace, & once or twice when he 
had obtained the advice of Council no proclamation issued. 

and two days later they sent a message to the Governor: — " As it does not appear to the 
House, that any thing contained in it can affect the majesty of the King, the dignity of the 
government, the honor of the General Court, or the true interest of the Province, they think 
they may be fully justified in their determination to take no further notice of it." On the 
following day he delivered a speech to both branches, in which, after administering a sharp 
rebuke to the Representatives, he addressed the Council as follows: — " Gentlemen of the 
Council, I return you thanks for your steady, uniform, and patriotic conduct during this 
whole session, which has shewn you impressed with a full sense of your duty, both to your 
King and your country. The unanimous example of men of your respectable characters 
cannot fail of having great weight to engage the people in general to unite in proper means 
to put an end to the dissention which has so long harrassed this Province in its internal 
policj' and disgraced it in its reputation abroad. I shall not fail to make a faithful repre- 
sentation to his Majesty of your merit upon this occasion." See Bradford's State Papers, 
pp. 118-121. — Eds. 


In these cases we suppose he did not think that we should 
have advised to a proclamation, but then he intended 
our refusal as an item against the Council. 

During his administration there were [blank] proclama- 
tions issued with advice of Council, & yet it is determined 
by the Lords of Council that the Massachusetts Council 
is backward to joyn with the Governor in measures to 
prevent disorders, nay, adopt those principles & use meas- 
ures to countenance them. Farther had there been any 
Justices of the Peace that Gov r Bernard thought failed in 
their duty, why did he not summon a general Council, ask 
the advice of Council to remove them ? This he never 
did. It was therefore time enough for him or any one 
else to assert these as facts when we had refused, which, 
we again say, the Council never did. 

And since the absence of Governor Barnard, how many 
proclamations have been issued, particularly upon M r Hul- 
ton, one of the Commissioners of the Customs' complaint, 
or rather on the Council's first hearing that a trespass 
was committed upon the windows of his house in a coun- 
try town, above five miles from Boston, in the night, 
when he & his family were a-bed in it, tho' at the same 
time the Council had no reason to think there were 
twenty persons present when the trespass was committed, 
or that it would have been committed at all had he been 
in Boston.* The Council are unanimously of opinion that 
the better part of the town of Boston, that all the influ- 
ential, leading men in it, were anxiously concerned to 
preserve the Commissioners' persons from any insult or 
abuse & their property from the appearance of a trespass. 
Nay, we do not think the people of the town were dis- 
posed to injure their persons or property, but that on the 
contrary the Commissioners would have been in perfect 
safety at Boston had y y have continued y r . We perswade 

* See note ante, p. 195. — Eds. 


ourselves that the Lieut. Governor will do the Council 
justice touching those things of this nature that have 
taken place during his administration. 

Our surprise (if possible) still rises when we are charged 
with meeting & acting as a Council of State without a 
summons from the Governor, & without his presence, & 
printing our resolutions. We are put to a difficulty to 
make answer to this, as there is no truth, or even shadow 
of truth in it. How can we prove a negative? what 
method can we take to do it ? Had there been mention 
made of any particular time and case, it would have eased 
us of this impossibility. We can guess only at this, there 
was an affair in our legislative capacity that would have 
been finished in four minutes before the Governor pro- 
rogued the Court, which the Governor well knew. His 
Excellency did not at that time act as he & all other Gov- 
ernors had done before a recess, namely, to ask the Coun- 
cil whether they had any thing further to do. But 
unheard, excepting by the Secretary & one or two more 
that were near him, ordered the House up. And the 
Court was then prorogued without our compleating what 
we were upon in our legislative capacity. And upon sun- 
dry remonstrances & arguments with the Governor, he 
permitted us to finish what we were then upon ; and after 
it was finished, w T e published it. We do not see any crime 
in this, nor even in our meeting together, when the Gov- 
ernor hath laid a charge against the Council, even with- 
out his summons & presence. The necessity of the thing 
will justify such a conduct, or else the Council of this 
Province are of all men the most unhappy, more so than 
any individual of his Majesty's subjects in his extended 
dominions. And yet we do possitively declare the Council 
never once met as a Council of State without his permis- 
sion. There is an unhappy affair arising from the depo- 
sition of the Secretary which was sent home & made 
publick, to which the Council have made answer, & in one 


of their resolves desired you to make the best improve- 
ment of, & therefore we refer you to it.* 

Upon the whole, considering that our Charter differs 
from m[ost] charters, — they are of grace; ours not so, 
but for servic[e to] be done, & therefore is in the nature 
of a deed where there [is] valuable consideration paid ; 
the immense sums of money it cost our ancestors in com- 
ing over & settling an [torn\ wilderness & purchasing the 
land of the natives ; the many bloody wars they & we 
have been engaged in, all at our own cost, have now made 
it a fruitful field which hath been of such amazing advan- 
tage to Great Britain, both by our conquests, our fishery, 
our trade, & from what of the British manufactures have 
been consumed amongst us, so that in every respect we 
have exceeded the most sanguine hopes and expectations 
for the real service of the Crown ; — we infer that to de- 
prive us of our Charter, or the liberty of chusing Coun- 
cellors, which comes to the same thing, must be contrary 
to law, reason, & common equity. And we doubt not of 
your hearty concurrence with us in using your best en- 
deavours to prevent the evils meditated & threatned, 
which should they take place will work the destruction of 
those rights, civil & religious, which we think have been 
dearly purchased & never forfeited. 

In Council, October 30 th , 1770. The Committee ap- 
pointed the 25 th instant to prepare the draft of a letter to 
M r Agent Bollan reported the foregoing which was read 
and accepted, and thereupon Ordered, that Samuel Dan- 
forth, Esq., sign the same (as President of the Board), 
and transmit it to M r Bollan accordingly. 

Jn° Cotton, D. Secry. 

* See ante, pp. 219-224. — Eds. 

1770.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 233 


To the Hon. Tho s Pownall, Esq* 

Boston, Nov*. 12, 1770. 

Dear Sir, — I wrote you two letters by Capt. Lyde 
dated y e 22 d Oct° & 2 d Nov r , accompanied with several 
papers enclosed. The owner of y e ship, M r Dennie, gave 
them to Capt. Lyde, with directions to deliver them 
to you himself. I mentioned to you that y e House of 
Rep 8 had chosen D r Franklin their agent. By this oppor- 
tunity they write to him, and inform him of y e state and 
circumstances of y e Province, and the grievances it labors 
under, and desire him to use his utmost endeavours to 
obtain redress. The mode of doing it is left to himself. 
They inform him that M r Bollan is agent for y e Council, 
and doubt not he will confer with him about y e measures 
to be pursued for y e best good of y e Province. To y e same 
purpose y e Council have wrote to M r Bollan, both by Lyde 
and Scott, and particularly with a view to remove y e 
impressions made to y e disadvantage of y e Council by y e 
misrepresentations and unwearied endeavours of the ene- 
mies of y e Province. For that end they have sent him a 
copy of Gov r Bernard's speech in y e beginning of 1768, 
in which he speaks in high terms his approbation of 
their conduct. They have also sent him extracts from 
y e Council Books, whereby it appears they have done all 
that was in their power to do by advising proclamations 
& prosecutions in y e cases laid before them by y e Gov r , 
and w ch y e Gov r in y e time of them thought was all they 
could do. 

Gov r Bernard in his letters to Lord Hillsborough w ch 
are printed complains, you know, of y e Council acting as a 
Council of State and independent of him, which complaint 
with others is obviated in y e Council's letter to Lord 
Hillsboro in print ; but notwithstanding, it is renewed in 
y e report of y e Privy Council of last July, which occasioned 


his Majesty's order to y e L* Gov r to surrender Castle W m . 
On this head y e Council by this conveyance sends some- 
thing further to M r Bollan to exculpate themselves ; as 
they also do a duplicate of their proceedings respecting 
the Secretary. The House, too, now send a copy of y e s d 
proceedings to their agent. 

The L fc Gov r ' 8 speech at y e opening of y e present session 
informs y e Court that exceptions had been taken to y e 
settlements made in y e eastern parts of y e Province to y e 
eastward of Sagadahoc, on account of y e waste and de- 
struction of y e King's timber occasioned by them, and that 
it is expected y e remedy of this mischief should come from 
y e Province. A com tee of y e two Houses have this part of 
y e speech now under consideration. I apprehend an 
effectual remedy can be applied only by Parliament ; and 
this in a way most judiciously pointed out by you in your 
late book concerning y e Colonies. If it was made y e in- 
terest of y e land proprietor to preserve y e timber for y e 
King's use, there would be no danger of a waste of it ; 
but from y e operation of y e acts of Parliament respecting 
this matter, it becomes his interest to destroy it as fast as 
he can. His having on his land a tree fit for a royal mast 
subjects it to y e inroads of y e contractors' agents, who by 
destroying y e smaller timber and doing other damage to 
come at and carry off such a tree, for which damage no 
recompence is made, make it his interest to destroy, or 
any how get rid of y e tree if he cannot saw it into boards, 
w ch is y e common use such trees have been applied to 
where saw-mills were handy. On y e Kennebeck Prop"' 
lands is a considerable number of mast-trees which y e s d 
agents are daily depriving the Prop rs of the benefit of. 
It is by their exertions and great expence that those lands 
have been peopled, whereby it has become practicable to 
procure those trees, and now those agents and their em- 
ployers are reaping the fruits of that expence. In y e 
Kennebeck Patent there is no reserve of trees, or any 

1770.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 235 

thing else, but a fifth of royal mines. The Prop rs there- 
fore think they have y e absolute property of them, and 
are about taking measures for securing that property. 
If it should be decreed to be clearly in y e Prop rs , they have 
no other intention than to apply or reserve y e mast trees 
for y e use of y e Crown. I shall take it as a great favor if 
you '11 please to procure me a copy of the contract made 
with y e Crown for supplying y e navy with masts and any 
necessary information relative to this business. 

I have read with great pleasure your two speeches in 
Parliament on y e subject of American affairs. They are 
excellent, and I again thank you for them. In that w ch 
introduced your motion for y e total repeal of y e last 
American Revenue Act, you have clearly proved among 
other things that y e reasons on w ch y e s d act is founded, 
and w ch appear in y e preamble, viz., that y e support of 
governm* is not provided for in the Colonies, &c, are 
utterly false and are meer pretences. In y e other, of 
which this Province is y e principal subject, you have clearly 
shewn y e constitutional union of y e supreme military 
power with y e supreme civil in y e same person, and that 
this union has always subsisted in y e Colonies, and must 
necessarily subsist so long as their present constitutions 
subsist. But of what avail are constitutions founded 
either on common law, charters, or acts of Parliament, or 
all of them together, if a Governour will suffer a letter 
from a minister of state to supercede them ? Your declara- 
tion in Parliament that you would not have obeyed such 
a letter does you great honor. It would be very happy for 
this Province if a similar spirit actuated its Governor. 
Such a spirit would have disdained y e arts and combina- 
tions that have been practiced and entered into to distress 
this Province. You intimate in one of your letters that 
if your family connections had permitted, you would have 
come to Boston the last summer. It would give your 
friends great pleasure to see you here, either in a private 


or public character, especially y e latter, and none of them 
more than myself, They wish they had any good reason 
to hope for it. 

I am with y e most affectionate regard, d r S r , Y r8 , &c. 

James Bowdoin. 
turn over. 

P. S. M r Temple (now or lately one of the Commis- 
sioners for America, and who goes passenger to England 
with Capt. Scott) informs me that by an account from the 
cashire the duties, &c, on the act of the 7 th of Geo. 3 d 
from the 8 th Sept r , 1767 (when the Board commenced) 
to the 5 th of Nov r , 1770, stand thus, viz., The total of 
the s d duties £16389.7.5. The total of seizures by offi- 
cers & pecuniary fines £870.16.7. Total of seizures by 
ships of war £1016. 12. 9%, amounting in the whole to 
£18276.16.9%, which alone is at present liable to the 
King's warrant or order, for payment of the support of 
government, &c. 


Portsmouth, 18 th Nov 1 *, 1770. 

Dear Sir, — I have night and day been forming my 
dispatches, which at this season are peculiarly numerous 
and extensive. However, they are at length done, and 
hope will be with you to-morrow. As my letters contain 
many things of various import, I have the pleasure to 
inclose you extracts, wherein I have taken pleasure in 
mentioning your name. If any thing more occurs to you 
that I can say or do, 1 will gladly exert ev'ry influence 
that can promote your interest, both as your friend, & as 
I esteem it the cause of truth & honor. As to myself I've 
ever made it my study to carry the King's service into 

* Born at Portsmouth, N. II., in 1737; graduated at Harvard College in 1755; appointed 
Governor of New Hampshire in 17G6; went to Halifax when the British evacuated Boston; 
and died in Halifax April 8, 1820. See 6 Mass. Hist. Coll. vol. iv. pp. 42, 43 n. — Eds. 

1770.] JOHN" WENTWORTH. 237 

effect without disgusting or injuring his subjects under 
rny command, hitherto with success. Therefore all my 
representations have been to this end, and that I've 
no opposition therein. I have also mention'd that as L d 
Dunmore has an independant salary, and it is reported 
Gov r Hutchinson has one, that I hope this Province, being 
much less able to afford a competency than either of these, 
and having been perfectly quiet during all the commotions 
on the continent, we might thence expect equal favor. 

It is probable you'l have enquiries about the state of 
that district west of Connecticut river, taken from this 
Prov. & added to N. York in 1763. You may rely on it, 
they are in absolute distress, their property granted, pos- 
sess'd & improv'd under patents of N. Hamps. are now 
torn from them by new patents under N. York, where 
they are treated with merciless cruelty, and will turn two 
thousand people to starve or load the gallows. Their situ- 
ation from two to five hundred miles from N. York, & 
the furthest acre not one hundred & eighty miles from 
Portsm , will for ever render it ruinous for that country to 
be in any other than this Province. As to the petitions, 
memorials & certificates that have been sent home to prove 
they wish to be in N. York, they are many of them clan- 
destinely obtained, — the signers knew not their con- 
tents ; others are signed by the wretchedest villains on 
earth, some of them by those who take the houses and 
lands of the poor sufferers & will no doubt sign any thing 
by which they may still hold & enjoy their rapacity. 
One of their judges was convicted of horse stealing, and 
was such a villain that I cou'd not let him remain a militia 
captain in this Province, nor cou'd he remain in it, unless 
in goal; besides he is a fanatic Quaker, & for this turn 
calls himself a Churchman. Another Jud^e endeavour'd 
to set at liberty three trespassers apprehended for cut- 
ting mast, & openly undertook their defence in opposition 
to the King's service & actually caus'd £117. 10/ sterl g 


to fall upon the Crown by his management ; all which 
& fifty times more you may rely on to be fact, & if oppty. 
permits you to offer, will be a public charity to a distressed 
people, and will also promote the King's service, if it effects 
the restor a to this Province. 

I rely on your greatest care of the extracts herewith 
inclosed. I shall impatiently wish to hear of your success 
in England, and heartily hope it will be to your greatest 
expectations. God bless you, my dear Sir, and may you 
soon return again in great prosperity to your native 
country & friends, is the w r ish of 

Your very affectionate friend. 

J. Wentworth. 

Honorable John Temple, Esq. 


Boston, Nov r 19, 1770. 

S R , — By Lyde I sent you two letters, with several 
enclosures, dated 22 d Oct & 2 d Nov r . By Scott I sent you 
a letter dated 12 th of Nov r , and I have now y e pleasure of 
writing you a few lines by Calef, to inform you that y e 
Council's proceedings in the Secretary's affair occasioned 
him to present a petition relative to two paragraphs of it. 
This petition was taken into consideration y e 14 th inst., & 
it was thought necessary some observations should be 
made thereon, for w ch purpose they appointed a com tee , 
whose report they accepted y e 16 th . From that report I 
will give you one extract, & for y e whole of it, as w r ell as 
for all that has passed in this affair, w ch is pretty lengthy, 
I beg leave to refer you to M r Bollan & D r Franklin, to 
both of whom it is sent. What follows is y e extract : 
" On this occasion the com tee cannot omit taking notice 
of what his Honor y e L* Gov r observed in Council upon 
y e s d report [the first report in this affair] a few days after 
its acceptance by y e Board, &c." (See y e report.) 

1770.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 239 

It being apprehended y e Sec ry ' s deposition might affect 
y e Charter, which it is said will be y e subject of considera- 
tion at y e approaching Parliament, y e Council thot it 
necessary to comunicate their proceedings on it to y e 
House of Representatives, who judged the affair to be of 
so much importance that they have sent copies of those 
proceedings to their agent D r Franklin, to whom they 
have wrote on y e subject. 

The Court is just about rising. Their measures are not 
so full as I wish they had been, and as are recommended 
in your letters, which from the first of the session have 
been in the hands of the Speaker of the House, & were 
communicated to their committee. But I hope they will be 
sufficient to prevent any alteration in our constitution, or 
any further harsh measures being taken. This hope, how- 
ever, is principally built on the concurrent efforts of our 
friends in Parliament, among whom you will permit me 
to say you stand distinguished. I have y e honor to be, 
with y e most perfect regard, 

Y rs * &c. James Bowdoin. 


Boston, Nov r 29, 1770. 

Alex a Mackay, Esq r . Dear Sir, — I had y e pleasure 
of writing to you in May last, since which I have received 
your obliging letter of y e 7 th of April. I should have 
acknowledged y e receipt of it before this time, but I did 
not know where to direct a letter for you during y e recess 
of Parliament. I thank you for y e information of what 
passed between you and some of y e ministry on y e subject 
of American affairs. I doubt not you endeavoured to 
remove prejudices, and to represent persons and things in 
their just light. I wish the same candour had taken place 
in all those that undertook to make representations on the 


same subject ; and when made that they had been better 
considered, or that those affected by them had had an 
opportunity of acquiescing in, or disproving y e justness of 
them, in either of which cases the situation of things 
would not have been so disagreeable and perplexed as at 
present. But y e representations have had in part their 
intended effect, and the principal representer and some of 
his coadjutors instead of the proper reward of their de- 
merit have had in several ways y e royal bounty bestowed 
upon them. A certain baronet expected to have realised 
at least £2000 p r annum, which might be the motive for 
his endeavouring to procure y e establishment of a civil list 
for America, a thing which by his often mentioning it in 
conversation & declaring y e expediency of it, his mind 
seemed invariably fixed upon, even a considerable time 
before the Stamp Act existed. As he knew such a list 
and his own appointment out of it would depend on a 
revenue to be raised in America, is it uncharitable to sup- 
pose he would use his endeavours to procure an act of 
Parliament for that purpose, especially when his office, w ch 
led him to a correspondence with the minister, gave him 
so good an opportunity of using them ? Does his gener- 
osity or any part of his conduct, either public or private, 
militate with such a supposition ? Or do his letters in 
particular (such of them as have been published) in any 
respect militate with it ? This supposition is further sup- 
ported by his occasional declarations above referred to, 
and by his prophecies that such a revenue would take 
place. But his letters to ministry (secret & confidential) 
if they could be come at, would probably reduce to a cer- 
tainty what I mention only as a supposition. He has 
denied indeed that he ever used such endeavours ; he has 
denied, too, that he ever wrote any thing unfavorable to 
y e Province, or tending to abridge its privileges & rights. 
But of this the fullest proof is exhibited in his letters lately 
published. We are therefore under no necessity of receiv- 

1770.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 241 

ing as infallible truth what he has said with regard to y e 
other matter. Plans of revenue thus proposed have un- 
happily been adopted, & have occasioned all y e uneasinesses 
and jarrings between y e two countries. The mischiefs 
arising from them you will probably think ought to have 
fallen upon y e head of y e proposer. But now mischiefs 
have happened how are they to be remedied ? The remedy 
is plain, but it will be to no purpose to propose it so long 
as administration entertain y e opinion that money may be 
had from y e Colonies by a revenue. This opinion, how- 
ever, will not appear to be well founded when it is consid- 
ered that all y e Colonies (I think all), except this of Massa. 
Bay, have paper for their currency ; and some of them for 
several years past have been soliciting y e repeal of the act 
of Parliament and of the instructions whereby they were 
prevented issuing paper bills upon y e credit of y e Colony 
in y e manner that had been usual ; and on w ch bills they 
declared they wholly depended for a currency to enable 
them to carry on their trade. In consequence of their 
representations y e s d act has lately been repealed & y e in- 
structions withdrawn, so that it appears administration 
was convinced there was little or no real money among 
them, or that whatever they collected in y e way of trade 
was sent to Great Britain tow ds paying their debts. This 
is the fact in all y e Colonies. 

In this Colony y e Parliamentary re-imbursement for 
taking Cape Breton in 1745 enabled us, with y e taxes that 
were laid, to cancel all our paper currency, and to substi- 
tute real money in its stead. It has been frequently 
apprehended from a scarcity of such money that we should 
be obliged to recur to paper ; but y e evils we experienced 
by a depreciating paper currency have kept us from it 
hitherto with y e assistance of merchants, who have been 
under a necessity, in order to carry on their trade, to im- 
port occasionally (tho' to their loss) Portugal & Spanish 
coin, which has happily so far answered the wants of y e 



community as to prevent a recurrence to paper. Money 
in a quantity to make it an object of revenue is not to be 
had from y e Colonies. What is remitted to England is by 
a circuitous trade, and principally from Spain & Portugal, 
all which added to the numerous articles of their own and 
foreign produce sent by them to Britain, is scarcely suffi- 
cient to pay for what they import from thence. What- 
ever, therefore, is taken from them as revenue not only 
so far prevents the paying y e debt due to Britain, but 
operates to y e discouragement and lessening of their general 
trade, upon which their ability to pay that debt and con- 
tinue that importation depends. 

With respect to y e remedy above mentioned nothing 
more or less is necessary than bringing things to y e same 
state in which they were eight or ten years ago, one ex- 
ception being made. But you'll ask, shall y e honor of 
Parliament be given up by y e repeal of all y e American 
revenue acts that have been made since that time ? It 
does not appear that y e honor of Parliam* w d be affected 
by such a repeal, any more than by y e repeal of any other 
acts. On commercial considerations it is for y e interest 
of G. Britain they should be repealed. The repeal w d not 
infer a doubt about y e right of taxing y e Colonies, which 
has been the objection to it ; for as long as y e act assert- 
ing that riffht remains such an inference cannot be made. 
To this act y e above exception refers. But y e conduct of 
Americans is a further objection. I will not undertake to 
justify all their conduct. However wrong it may be in 
some respects, the principles it sprung from will not be 
condemned by Englishmen, who have been remarkably 
tenacious of their liberties and rights which they now hold 
by means of y e noble exertions of their ancestors. If the 
question was to be determined by y e conduct of y e Ameri- 
cans, is there nothing to be said in their favour ? nothing 
to extenuate the alledged criminality of their proceedings ? 
Have they not petitioned Parliament? repeatedly peti- 

1770.] JAMES BOWDOIN". 243 

tioned both Houses ? and humbly supplicated the throne, 
and repeated their supplications ? Have their petitions 
been attended to, or their supplications heard ? When 
the}'' petitioned y e House of Commons on y e subject of a 
stamp duty, which was in consequence of a vote of that 
House at the preceeding session for notifying y e Colonies 
that such a duty was proposed, y e petitions seasonably 
reached y e hands of their respective agents, who waited 
upon y e ministry with them, and were informed that y e 
proper time for presenting them would be at y e first read- 
ing of y e bill in y e House, otherwise they would have been 
presented before. They were presented at that time 
accordingly, but immediately it was objected, that by a 
rule of y e House no petition could be rec d ag* a money bill, 
& as y e s d petitions were not offered before y e bill had been 
reported to y e House, they could not be rec d , whereupon 
notwithstand s the vote and information aforesaid, and 
notwithstanding it was urged on the occasion that this 
was manifestly an exempt case w ch could not fall und r that 
rule, they were rejected. This measure however wise and 
just made a deep impression on y e minds of y e Americans 
who did not expect it from the collected wisdom and jus- 
tice of y e nation. This, with y e rejection of their other 
succeeding petitions, induced them to think that they had 
nothing to hope for but from themselves ; and here you 
have the key which will open to you 'the general reason 
of their conduct. Hence their plans of ceconomy and 
their non-importation agreements, from some of which 
real good has arisen, however inoperative they have been 
to procure y e repeal of the revenue acts. Hence in part, but 
principally from deliberate and planned provocations, have 
proceeded the extravagances that have happened, which tho 
criminal in themselves, and I heartily condemn them, have 
been few, innocent, and insignificant, compared with those 
that have happened in England within y e same time. 
But with regard to y e repealing the s d acts, it is humbly 


apprehended that y c conduct of y e Americans is out of y e 
question. The proper question upon y e principles of 
meerly British policy seems to be, What is for y e interest 
of Great Britain ? With the interest of Britain the repeal 
of those acts is so clearly connected, that Americans may 
make themselves perfectly easy, if that interest is suffered 
to produce its natural effect. There is in this case at least, 
and if Britain will be guided by her own true interest, it 
is apprehended there will be in all cases not extraordinary, 
a coincidence of interests which from y e nature of things, 
if nature is not counterworked, must restore and keep 
inviolate y e union and harmony that lately subsisted be- 
tween her and her Colonies, and which it must give to y e 
real friends of either y e highest satisfaction to see brought 
about. But unhappily while things are viewed through 
a false medium and mole-hills appear mountains, while 
men here find it their interest to be, & are rewarded for 
being, our accusers, when in consequence of it they aggra- 
vate trifles, and (as is highly probable) procure petty mis- 
chiefs to be done to themselves or others, and then make 
them y e subject of depositions & memorials ; while y e 
voluntary flight of y e Commissioners is believed to be y e 
effect of compulsion ; while informations are taken against 
us and kept secret from us, and no opportunity given to make 
a defence ; & when in consequence of these things hard 
measures have been taken, and are still pursuing, y e former 
union and harmony is rather to be wished for than expected. 
Before this reaches you, you will probably see M r 
Temple in London ; he sailed in Capt. Scott y e 25 th instant. 
His honesty & fidelity have occasioned his dismission from 
y e Board of Commissioners. Your good friend M r Erving 
desires his particular regards to you. M rs Bowdoin & all 
y e family are much obliged for your kind mention of them, 
& present you their best compliments. I am, with great 
truth & regard, dear Sir, 

Y r most obed. hble. serv*. 

James Bowdoin. 

1770.] JAMES BOWDOIN". 245 


Boston, Dec 3 rd , 1770. 

Dear Sir, — In one of y r letters you mention it as part 
of the ministerial plan that y e Gov r should have more ex- 
tensive and independent salaries. This has been already 
carried into execution with regard to New York. Lord 
Dunmore has got a warrant (a copy of which. I have seen) 
to receive out of y e American chest £2000 p r annum to be 
paid half of it at y e end of each half year from y e date of 
his commission, w ch is y e beginning of Jan ry last, whereby 
his Lordship is intitled to receive about 1500 guineas for 
y e time previous to his arrival in his government. A like 
warrant will probably issue for the Gov r here. A step 
tow ds obtaining it has lately been taken. A grant was 
made by y e House of £325 to y e L* Gov r for 6 months. 
The usual grant to a L fc Gov r for y e same time is £300. 
The bill having in it certain words relative to the stile of 
enacting which had been objected to by y e Council in an- 
other bill, and concerning which several messages have 
since passed between y e chair & House, the s d bill for y e 
grant with divers others lay for some days on y e table of 
y e Plouse till they could know whether they w d be assented 
to with those words in them. As soon as it was known 
by one of s d messages that they would not, the House 
striking out the exceptioned words imediately sent y e s d 
bills to y e Council, who passed them. The bill containing 
the grant has not had the assent of y e chair, the reason of 
which appears to be this. While y e s d bill lay on y e 
table of y e House y e L fc Gov r came to Council, where were 
divers papers ready for his signing ; and among them an 
engrossed bill which had not y e words excepted to. He 
said there was an instruction against his signing any act of 
y e Gen 1 Court before his salary should be provided for, but 
he would by no means delay y e public business, and therf ore 
tho he must in that case so far disregard himself as to re- 


fuse to sign any grant made to him, he would sign y e s d 
engrossed bill ; and then signed it accordingly. Now 
whatever might be designed by this measure y e manifest 
tendency of it is to procure an independent salary for the 
Governor, and will operate to promote and carry into 
execution y e ministerial plan above mentioned, which (as 
you intimate) appears intended to make y e government 
exterior in its principle, and to destroy all political 

I have wrote you T Lyde, Scott, Calef, & Bryant, & 
this you'll receive V Hood. I am with y e most affec- 
tionate regards, dear S r , 

Y rs , &c. J. Bowdoin. 

P. S. I do not know where to direct a letter for Gen 1 
Mackay. I take y e liberty to enclose one for him, & to 
desire y e favor you will cause it to be sent to him. As 
it is on American politics I leave it open for y r perusal. 
Please to seal & send it. 


Nassau Street, Soho, Dec r 20 th , 1770. 

Sir, — Having been favour'd with your letter of in- 
struction of the 2 d of Nov r , written by order of the Hon ble 
the Council, accompanied with their renewal of my au- 
thority, judicious observations, & ample proofs, mani- 
festing their good conduct on many special occasions, in 
the course of several years past, with the great impro- 
priety of taking in secret, & publishing in this Kingdom, 
affidavits derogatory to the proceedings of the Councils 
held on the 6 th and 7 th of March, I shall endeavour to 
make the best use of the whole for the honour of the 
Board & service of the Province. 

But altho' I am of opinion that the minutes of Courts 
& Councils are subject wholly to their direction & correc- 

'1770.] JOHN TEMPLE. 247 

tion, and that the practice of disparaging them by such 
affidavits wou'd inevitably produce the greatest mischiefs, 
yet I think the iihediate publication of the papers trans- 
mited would certainly tend to prejudice, if not prevent, 
the better use which I hope to make of them. 

I have the pleas re to inform you that your affairs have 
for some short time had so much better appearance than 
before, that I am not without hopes no attempt will be 
made to carry into execution the grievous measures pro- 
jected & prepared against you. 

I am with the greatest respect for the Hon. the Council, 

Your most obedient & most humble servant. 


The Hon ble Sam l Danforth, Esq b . 


London, 30 Dec r , 1770. 

My dear Sir, — I was yesterday very greatly mortified 
when I called at your lodging & found you had left Lon- 
don but only the day before. I was, however, much 
pleased to learn you was very well. I arrived at Dover 
last Fryday, much fatigued, after a very tempestuous pas- 
siage of 27 days from Boston, and it being the season of 
all absence from town, M r Trecothick prevail'd with me 
to remain a few days with him at Addington, from whence 
I had the honor of paying my compliments at Hayes, & 
where I had the pleasure of seeing my Lord Chatham very 
well. I am truly impatient to see you, and if you do not 
soon return to town I will certainly visit you in the country. 
I left my brother very well & happy at Boston. He re- 
tains a gratef ull remembrance of your friendship & civillity 
to him in England. I am, dear Whateley, 
Most sincerely yours ; 

J. Temple. 

To Tho s Whatley, Esq., at Claremont. 



D? Benj? Franklin 

Boston January 2. 1771. 

Dear Sir, — I take this opportunity by my son to ex- 
press my own pleasure, & the general satisfaction, at your 
appointment as Agent for the House of Representatives. 
The Council have recommended to their Agent Mf Bollan 
to consult & cooperate with you for the best interest of 
the Province, which as it has distinguished itself in the 
great cause of American liberty is now become the prin- 
cipal object of ministerial resentment. But it is hoped 
your endeavours in concurrence with the other friends of 
America will dissipate the cloud that seems ready to dis- 
charge upon it. My son's health being precarious I have 
been lately advised to let him try the effect of a voyage, 
which it is apprehended may be beneficial to him. This 
occasions his going to England sooner than I intended. 
Permit me to recommend him to your friendship, as I 
also do his uncle Mr. Stewart, who does me the favor to 
take him under his care. Your advice to him, particularly 
with regard to his conduct & the means of improvement, 
I shall esteem a singular favor. I am with the greatest 
regard, dear Sir, Your most obed. & very hble. servant. 

James Bowdoin. 

My son will deliver you a pamphlet containing Pro- 
ceedings of y e Council, w ch you already have had in 


Dear Sir, — I am very sorry that I was not in town 
when you did me the honour of calling at my lodgings ; 
but 1 hope to indemnify myself by waiting soon upon 
you. I will not give you the trouble of seeking me here, 

1771.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 249 

where my abode is very uncertain. I may stay some 
days, or I may go away to-morrow, & my motions do not 
depend on myself ; but as soon as I get to town, I shall 
make it my first business to pay my respects to you. I 
am, dear Sir, 

Your most obedient & most humble serv fc . 

Thomas Whatelt. 

Esher, 7 th Jan r r, 1771. 


Nassau Street, Soho, Jan r r 28 th , 1771. 

Sir, — Upon the most mature & general consideration, 
in order to the best defence of the Council & the Province 
Charter, I determined to present a petition to the King in 
Council, accompanied with the papers transmited contain- 
ing the proofs of the Council's good conduct, and being 
fully satisfied of the rectitude & utility of this measure, 
resolved to proceed fortiter in re et suaviter in modo, and 
accordingly prepared my petition with due care as well as 
justice to the Province & the Council, and when conclud- 
ing it D r Franklin calling upon me, I acquainted him with 
this measure, and the draught of the petition was read to 
him, both which he approved. On Monday the 14 th inst* 
I carried my petition, with my authority & all the papers 
put in order, to the Council Office, & delivering them to 
the clerk in waiting he attentively read the petition, and 
behaved with civility & candour, but not without con- 
siderable reserve touching those proceedings which had 
chiefly occasioned it. All the papers relating to them, he 
said, were in L d Hillsboro' 8 office, & seem'd, I thought, 
rather enclined that my petition shou'd pass thro' his 
Lordship's office ; but waving this, & considering the 
petition as lodged in the proper place, & that all things 
are best understood when known from their beginings, I 
observed to him that the natural amount of the new 


taxation system, the primary cause of the American dis- 
orders, was to disturb & starve the hen that laid the 
golden egg ; and then proceeded to support the petition as 
far as the occasion required, after which he appointed me 
to come again on the Thursday or Saturday following ; 
and when waiting on the Thursday morning, he told me 
that he had laid my petition with the papers before the 
L d President, who gave for answer that when any thing 
shou'd be moved in Council my petition shou'd be con- 
sider' d, to which I replied that this was very well & satis- 
factory, if nothing decisive had been done ; whereupon 
he said nothing decisive was done, and afterwards, a few 
things intervening, wherein I declared that the Council 
was very desirous to stand fair in the eyes of their sov- 
ereign, he agreed that was a laudable desire, and after 
observing that my petition was to be heard, if there was 
occasion, said that no decisive measure had been taken 
that he knew of ; wherefore I shall in course for the 
future attend to such motions as may take place. 

My determination to proceed in your defence by peti- 
tion to his Majesty, instead of the proposed publication, 
was founded, among others, upon these reasons : 1. publi- 
cation being in its nature, you are sensible, an appeal to 
the people is to be made rather in the last than in the 
first resort ; 2. when a case is depending, the office & 
interest of the parties require their proofs to be collected, 
prepared, & reserved for due consideration, and when 
presented fresh, fair, & entire to the competent judges 
they come uno impetu with the best prospect of success ; 
3. truth being ever attended with a happy coincidence of 
all its parts, & the knowledge of the whole being requisite 
to form a right judgment, the publication of part of the 
evidence by dividing naturally weakens it, & so prejudices 
the defence, instead of enforcing it ; 4. as the measure 
devised & prepared against you, if an attempt be made 
for its execution, will in course receive its first sanction 

1771.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 251 

from the King in Council, your evidence ought, I con- 
ceive, from the nature of the case, to be first laid before 
his Majesty ; and this being a fair & respectful proceeding, 
it will facilitate rather than prevent laying the same before 
Parliam*, in case a bill shou'd be brought in for a repeal 
pro tanto of your Charter, which, I have considerable 
hopes, will not take place, tho' the late convention with 
Spain has not, in my opinion, lessen' d the danger, and 
publication, you are sensible, may afterwards be made, if 
there shou'd be occasion for it ; whereas publication in the 
first instance wou'd probably prevent the admission of 
your evidence by the King or Parliament, and the offer 
of what had been publish'd to the world be deem'd an 
offence. When I received the first parcel of pamphlets 
publish'd by the merch ts of Boston, entit d " Observations 
on several Acts of ParliamV' &c, after perusal I carried 
one of them directly to M r iUmon, & desired him to print, 
with the greatest dispatch, 500 copies to be deliv d to the 
members at the doors of the two Houses of Par?, and 
when printed & fully prepared for delivery, attending at 
his shop in order to see the matter accomplished, I there 
learnt that this pamphlet was publish'd early that morn- 
ing, wherefore, as I cou'd not with decency & propriety 
have a paper presented to the Lords or other memb rs of 
Parl fc which they cou'd buy of the hawkers in the lobby 
for a shilling, I had these copies to pay for without being 
able to make use of them. The Council having been 
pleased to leave the use of the papers transmited for 
defence of themselves & the Charter to my discretion, I 
have troubled you with the chief reasons of my conduct, 
which I hope will be approved. Inclosed you receive a 
copy of my petition, w T ith another to be communicated 
to the House of Representatives, if the Council shall 
think fit. 

The great importance & difficult state of the Province 
affairs plainly require the best defence which in some in- 


teresting points cannot be made without sufficient & 
unquestionable authority to appear for the Province ; 
wherefore the present state of the agency has given me 
much concern. When I carried my last authority to the 
Plantation Office to be enter'd, pursuant to an order made 
some years past, the Secry, after reading it, asked me if I 
thought the vote of the Council made me agent for the 
Province, to which I answer d that their vote made me 
agent for them, & also for the Province, as far as lay in 
their power ; whereupon he declared to this effect, that I 
had heretofore given their Board good national informa- 
tion, and they wou'd be glad to do business with me in 
case I was duly authorised by the Province as in time 
past, to which I replied that the Council, & every other 
order of men who cou'd not appear in person when charged 
with any misconduct, had doubtless good right to appoint 
an agent for their defence. To this he assented and after- 
wards said my authority shou'd be enter'd tit valeat quantum 
valere potest, and I have since been inform'd by one of the 
clerks it was enter'd. and the rig;ht of the Council to defend 
themselves by their agent being allowed at the Council 
Office, I am so far enabled, without question, to defend 
the Charter against any attempt made to wound it thro' 
your sides. As to appearance in Parliament, in case the 
design form'd against both shou'd be brought there, I 
presume they will not refuse my appearance in your behalf ; 
and as to appearance in other cases that may arise there, 
the Parliam* will doubtless govern themselves by their 
own sense of the matter ; and I have observ'd to D r Frank- 
lin that the best method in such case wou'd be, in my 
opinion, for us to unite in a petition ; to which he agreed, 
and he will doubtless acquaint the House of Repres ves with 
the treatment which their appointment of him to be their 
agent received from the Secry of State, who rejected it. 

The right of defence, a right coiiion to all bodies politic 
& natural, being apparently necessary to guard & preserve 

1771.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 253 

every other right, too great care cannot, I conceive, be 
taken to support it & to employ all the means proper & 
requisite for its beneficial use, more especially when other 
capital rights are contravened or endangered, & attempts 
made to subvert, control, disparage, or distress this right. 
The right of defence includes a right to all the means 
requisite & proper to its existence & use, and consequently 
a right in the parties concerned to name, appoint & support 
their own defender, when they cannot make their defence 
in person ; without this it is evident the benefit of defence 
wou'd be taken away. The first thing necessary to defend 
the Province, you are sensible, is the appearance of a 
person duly authorised, and it stil appears to me that the 
constitution of a provincial agent or attorney by deed 
under the province seal, made in their corporate name, 
given by their Charter, to wit, the King's Province, &c, 
in like manner as the corporations in the kingdom consti- 
tute their attorney, agent, or deputy to appear & act for 
them, is the most proper method of proceeding, and most 
free from difficulty, as by conforming to the practise of the 
kingdom your proceeding wou'd be warranted, a comon 
cause made, and the caution of ministers & others incited 
not to prejudice it. According to my information the 
present Secry of State some time past held that the Colo- 
nies had no need of agents, whose services might well be 
performed by the Governours : this strange notion, so 
apparently incompatible with the preservation of the rights 
of the governed, needs no refutation. His Lords p now 
holds, as I understand, that your agent ought of necessity 
to be appointed by an act or law pass'd for that purpose. 
Now this is liable to check upon check ; for after the 
Governour's consent, unprevented by a minister, any such 
act or law might be disallow' d & rejected here at the time 
when your agent was defending some of your most essen- 
tial rights. For illustration, suppose the Council & House 
of Repres ves should be of opinion with me, that your Gov r 


is the King's locum tenens & his office entire ; that the chief 
civil & military authority being by the British & your 
constitution inseparable, the King cannot sever them ; 
that an independ* mili ry tends to the utter overthrow of 
the civ 1 power ; and that the operations of the great seal, 
which is dams regni, cannot be control'd by the privy seal, 
the King's signet, sign manual, or signification of his 
pleasure by his Secry, or, in other words, your Charter 
infringed by any of these ; and you shou'd instruct your 
agent to endeavour to the utmost to obtain a revocation 
of proceedings derogatory to your Charter, — I apprehend 
your agent wou'd not without reason consider himself as 
standing on a bough which might with one blow be cut 
off, & so let him fall with your defence to the ground. 
Whatever is founded in natural justice cannot be taken 
away, and your right of defence is plainly founded in 
nature, reason, & the comon law, that is, when the King 
creates a body politic, the law gives to that body the like 
defence as to a body natural. Your Charter provides that 
the Gen 1 Court shall anually name & settle all civil officers, 
except as therein excepted, & after grant 5 var s other 
powers provides that without the Governour's consent in 
writing no orders, laws, statutes, ordinances, elections, or 
other acts of government whatsoever made by the General 
Court, or in Council, shall be of any force ; hence some 
have supposed that the election & appointment of your 
agent were herein included, whereas these provisions relate 
to the government within the Province, and not to the 
appearance of the incorporated inhabitants in this king- 
dom, whose appearance is to be provided for by their 
delegates, this provision being made not for governing 
anywhere, but for defending the rights of those inhabitants 
before the government here. The appointment of an 
agent by deed of the corporation may illustrate this, and 
the nature of the thing is not changed by the use of other 
forms. The Secry of State, it is said, has declared the 

1771.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 255 

Governour to be one of the incorporated inhabitants within 
the intent of the Charter, not considering, I presume, that 
the Governour is the King's repres Te , and that one & the 
same person cannot at one & the same time be Governour 
& one of the governed. To conclude this point, it appears 
clearly to me that your pretensions to any rights will be 
nugatory & vain, if you are not allowed a free defence for 
their preservation, and therefore I have troubled you with 
so much matter upon this head. How far my sentiments 
may coincide with those of others I know not, but I hope 
they may serve in some measure to illustrate this important 
subject ; and as the great affairs of the Province require a 
provincial agent, I presume he will be appointed in the 
best manner that can be found practicable. 

The next thing essential to your defence is a right to 
pay for the services and the expenses of those who are 
appointed to make it ; without this it is manifest your 
being allowed to defend yourselves wou'd be a mere 

The freedom of defence, & proper care to make it in the 
best manner, being necessary to the enjoyment of your 
public rights. & the latter lying most within your power ; 
and in the course of the controversy between the King's 
ministers, their supporters & adherents and the Colon 8 , 
your agency, & that of others, appearing to me to have 
been in a condition unequal to the great occasion, T desire 
leave to say a few things hereupon. In all civil as well 
as military contests equality at least in the combat is to 
be provided, if possible ; now, if to superiour numbers, 
rewards, power, & influence on one side, superiour knowl- 
edge be added, victory will probably follow ; wherefore, 
under favour, I wou'd advise the Province, whose freedom, 
with that of the other Colon 8 & their mother country I 
wish may ever endure, in all future times to provide, if 
they can, an agent who has more learning & knowledge 
of the origin, nature, & rights of the Colonies than any of 


their adversaries, and to support him in season in a man- 
ner suitable to the dignity & difficulty of his office, so that 
he may appear with grace & spirit when he represents a 
free people and stands forth ready to maintain their rights 
against numerous & powerful opponents ; and rewards & 
punishm ts being the principal hinges of human govern- 
ment, policy, as well as justice, requires that an able & 
faithful agent, who in the discharge of his duty, unless 
the world much amend, will be sure on great occasions to 
find difficulties enough in his way, ought not to suffer in 
any respect from, as well as for, the Province. For my 
own part I know T no language sufficient to express the 
difficulties that have at different times attended the faith- 
ful service of the Province, & thank God for being able to 
say, what none can gainsay, that in the course of my long 
& hard service I never fail'd, on every great occasion, to 
discharge that duty which requires your agent to befidelis 
& fortis in arduis. Be pleased to consider w T hat success 
attended your affairs while you reposed an entire confi- 
dence in me, and being conscious that I have not only 
done my duty at all times to the Province, but moreover 
made great sacrifices in point of interest, health, & comfort 
to the public service, & so given cause of confirming rather 
than lessening the public confidence, the diminution of it 
cannot in the nature of things be agreeable. However, 
so long as I continue in the service I shall, God willing, 
go on to maintain the public rights in the best manner 
that lies in my power, well remembring that they who 
wou'd have justice shou'd do justice. Some intelligent 
persons have said they w T ere persuaded that if you had 
continued me in your service I shou'd have been able 
to have prevented, or lessened at least, your sufferings. 
What success a difference in conduct wou'd have had I 
cannot say; but it is certain that the difficulties of the 
service are much encreased upon him w T ho acts under a 
partial right of appearance, the best the times will afford ; 

1771.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 257 

wherefore I am surprised to find my late services have 
been supposed in point of payment to commence in July, 
1769, considering that I had six months before, by pre- 
senting your petition & my own, check' d the torrent of 
ministerial proceedings. The attempt to extend to you, 
& your supposed offences the stat. for trial of foreign 
treasons was surely a matter of great importance to you, 
with labour & difficulty to me. My petition in point of 
presentation was made upon this ground, that no man 
loses his domicil by going from home in the public service, 
and as to the matter of it not one of the crown lawyers 
wou'd undertake to answer my arguments when call'd 
upon to do it. No other person had openly appear'd in 
their public or private capacity to oppose this strange 
attempt, and several worthy persons, I understand, have 
preserved a copy of this petition as a lasting monument 
of the dangerous designs form'd against you, and of my 
endeavours to defeat them ; and the service continuing in 
point of attendance and correspondence, among other 
things, I obtain'd by the assistance of two worthy mem- 
bers of Parliam* various attendances, examination of the 
papers in the drawer of the House of Com 8 , and, insisting 
with resolution, authentic copies of Gov r Bernard's letters. 
It is needless to say they cou'd not be had at a small ex- 
pense. However, waving this affair for the present, under 
persuasion that I shall in time receive a just recompense 
for my services & expense, I desire to proceed to the future 
service of the Province, nil desperandum; but a victory, 
you are sensible, cannot be obtained by a retreat, nor ex- 
pected without th' appointment of proper combatants who 
know how to take the r proper ground, & how to defend it. 
Wherf ore I doubt not the Gen 1 Court will take proper care 
in this behalf. 

After taking great pains to understand the true founda- 
tion, structure, & nature of the English Colonies, my poli- 
tical creed is, that in point of right, national policy & 



lasting union, with the content, benefit, & safety of all, 
universal justice & universal social liberty ought ever to 
pervate the whole British dominion, and that the Colonies 
by enlarging under so great difficulties the public territory 
have the most meritorious claim to the perpetual enjoy- 
ment of the public rights ; and that they who govern the 
whole, instead of severance in point of right which tends 
to severance in point of fact, shou'd take for their guid- 
ance the political aphorism, Donee inseparabiles insuperabiles. 
Incited by this belief, & the desire to promote the welfare 
of the Province, I have endeavour'd to accomplish myself 
as a state lawyer, to which the knowledge of history & 
civil philosophy are confessedly necessary, a character less 
frequent of late than in times past, so that I might be 
able as well as ready to defend any proposition which I 
shou'd advance on your behalf before the King's ministers, 
the crown lawyers, or any higher powers, when the occa- 
sion shou'd require & they shou'd permit; and after having, 
on so many greater occasions, with entire or partial au- 
thority, or without any, exerted my poor abilities for your 
service I shou'd take great pleasure in contributing towards 
the restauration & establishment of your public rights ; 
and therefore, altho' my sense of your present difficulties & 
dangers seems, in some respects, to exceed your own, I 
shall be willing to undertake the public service in case the 
Gen 1 Court shall honour me with their appointment, only 
desiring that I may serve with a due regard to my own 
character, justice to the Province service as well as to 
myself requiring this, and that reasonable satisfaction in 
point of service & expense may take place in season. I 
do not mean by anything here said any aversion to D r 
Franklin's being join'd with me in the agency in case the 
General Court shall think the public service requires it ; 
altho' I have heretofore much suffer' d and the service hath 
been endanger'd by a joint agency. On the contrary I 
am persuaded (which I cou'd say of few others) that we 


shall well agree in the measures proper to promote the 
public service ; but at the same time in justice to myself 
observing that the present unhappy contests are of such 
nature that this junction cannot, I conceive, lessen my 

I am with the greatest respect for the Hon ble the Coun- 
cil, Sir 

Your most obedient & most humble servant. 


P. S. The Council having been pleased to mention their 
sense of the Middlesex election, and a worthy friend in 
your neighbourhood, as well as others here, having desired 
my opinion of this transaction, I send it herewith enclosed 
for your perusal at your leizure. 

The Hon ble Sam l Danforth, Esq b . 


[January, 1771.] 

To the King's most excellent Majesty in Council : 

The petition of Will m Bolian, Esq r , Agent for the Coun- 
cil of your Majesty's Province of the Massachusetts Bay 
in New England, most humbly sheweth : 

That the Charter of this Province, whereby the Council 
are from time to time constituted, was granted to the 
inhabitants by their most excellent Maj s King Will m 
& Queen Mary, in consideration of their distinguish'd 
public services and their sufferings by enlarging the pub- 
lic territory and defending it against the enemies of the 

That their preceding & subsequent services, all things 
considered, exceed in no small degree the services performed 
by any other European colony planted in America. 


That all the colonies deduced by the modern Europeans, 
in consequence of their marine discoveries, in making 
them members of the state, were founded on the celebrated 
plan of the Romans ; but it is presumed that in several 
points of public service the merits of any one of their 
it iu mines colonics, or other numerous colonies, were not equal 
to the services of the Massachusetts colony. 

That their present Charter was, by royal order, formed 
on the preparation or inspection of Holt & Pollexfen, 
Chief Justices, and Treby & Soiners, Attor 7 & Sollic r Gen 1 , 
who so far promoted & supported the revolution to which, 
& to your Maj' s illustrious family, the inhabitants of this 
Province have ever been firmly attached. 

That in the late unexampled state of difficulty & dis- 
tress which originated in ministerial errors tending to the 
impoverishment of the British and American merchants & 
the diminution of comerce, when daily encreasing, which 
is the chief support of your Maj' s naval empire, this pro- 
vine 1 Council have from time to time, as well as at all 
other times, faithfully used their best endeavours to pro- 
mote good order, with obedience to the laws, & the ad- 
vancement of the royal service, with the public welfare ; 
nevertheless they have been so far misrepresented that to 
their unspeakable grief they are brought into danger of 
suffering under your Maj' 8 displeasure as an order of men 
unworthy of their office ; but as in absolute governments 
the prince hath admited appeal from his decisions, that is, 
a sc male infonnato ad se bene informandum ; and your 
Maj' s equity & goodness being equal to the mildness, jus- 
tice, & excellence of the British government, which suffers 
none to be censured or condemned before they are heard 
& their defence considered, conscious of their own inno- 
cence, loyalty, & fidelity, they with all humility confide 
in your Maj' 8 justice & protection, and 

Your Majesty's petitioner most humbly herewith pre- 
sents the evidence of their good conduct, submitting the 


same to your Maj' 8 most gracious consideration, and 
humbly prays that he may be heard in their farther de- 
fence, if the occasion shall so require. 
All which is most humbly submitted, &c. 



London, Feb. 5, 1771. 

Dear Sir, — I am very sensible of the honour done me 
by your House of Representatives, in appointing me their 
Agent here. It will make me extreamly happy if I can 
render them any valuable service. I have had several 
conferences with Mr. Bollan on their affairs. There is a 
good understanding between us, which I shall endeavour 
to cultivate. At present the cloud that threatened our 
Charter Liberties seems to be blown over. In time I 
hope harmony will be restored between the two coun- 
tries, by leaving us in the full possession & enjoyment of 
our rights. 

It will be a great pleasure to me if I can be any way 
useful to your son while he stays in England ; being, with 
the greatest esteem and respect for you & Mrs. Bowdoin, 
dear Sir, 

Your most obedient & most humble Servant. 

B. Franklin. 

P. S. Inclos'd I send you a copy of an original paper of 
some curiosity now in my hands. The first part, i. e. the 
Queries, you will find in the papers pertaining to the 
Governor's History, but not the abstract or state given 
with them to Mr. Randolph.* The old spelling is pre- 
serv'd in the copy. 

* Randolph's answers to these queries is dated October 12, 1676, and is printed in 
Hutchinson's Collection of State Papers, pp. 477-503.— Eds. 


By Direccon of the Lords of the Committee of Plantations 

It is recommended to Mr. Edward Randolph appointed 
to carry his Maj. tee8 Ire to the Magistrates of the Mata- 
chusets in New England to informe himselfe as much as 
he can dureing his stay there of the points following, 

1. Where the legislative and executive powers of y e * gov- 
ernment are seated. 

2. What laws and ordinances are now in force there de- 
rogatory or contradictorie to those of England and 
what oath is proscribed by the government. 

3. What number of church members, freemen, inhabitants, 
planters, servants and slaves there are, of what profes- 
sions and estates, and how many of them are men 
able to bear amies. 

4. What number of horse and foot and whether they be 
trained bands or standing forces, and what old and 
experienced officers they have amongst them. 

5. What castles and forts they have in New England and 
how situated and what stores and provisions they are 
furnished withall. 

6. What are the reputed boundaries and contents of 

7. What correspondence doe they keep with theire nei- 
bours the French on the North & w th y e government of 
New Yorke on y e South. 

8. What hath been the originall cause of this p r sent war 
w th ye Indians, what are the advantages and disad- 
vantages occasioned thereby, and what will probably 
be the finall event thereof. 

9. What are the commodities of the production, growth 
and manufacture of the country, and what are those 
imported from other places, and particularly how the 


trade and navigation is carried on, whether directly 
to and from England or otherwise What number 
of ships doe trade thither yearly, and of what bur- 
then they are and where built, and lastly, what notice 
is taken of the Act of Navigacon. 

10. What are the taxes and fines laid upon the country, 
what rates and duties are charged upon goods ex- 
ported or imported, what public revenue doth arise 
to the gouernm% of what nature it is and how and 
by whom exacted and collected. 

11. How they generally stand affected to the governm* of 
England, what persons are the most popular and at 
present in the magistracie or like to be soe at the 
next election. 

12. What is the present state of the ecclesiasticall gou- 
ernment, how the Universities are at present rilled 
and by whome gouerned. 

These and other inquiries which his discretion shall 
dictate are to be made of all the provinces in generall, but 
particularly of the Matachusets, and how they doe att 
p r sent correspond with the confederat and other Colo- 
nies, and a particular information will be likewise requisite 
concerning the town of Boston, according to the former 
heads, how built, fortified, inhabited, & governed, &c. 

And an exact mapp of the whole country and town 
of Boston, if it can be procured, will be of very great 
vse and servise for a more cleare demonstration of the 

And because in severall of these particulars some esti- 
mat and calculation hath been made by those that are 
curious, therefore the said estimat is here undermentioned 
that Mr Randolph may by his inquiries be enabled when 
there either to confirme or disprove the truth thereof. 


An Abstract of New England. 

{120 thousand soules 
13 thousand families 
16 thousand y t can bear amies. 

f 12 ships of between 100 & 220 tuns. 
There are < 190 of between 20 & 100 tuns. 

1440 fisherboats of about 6 tuns each. 

There are 5 iron workes which cast noe gunns. 

15 merchants worth about 50,000ft>, or about 5000 one 
w th another. 

500 persons worth 3000ft) each. 

Noe house in New England hath aboue 20 roomes. 

Not 20 in Boston which have above 10 roomes each. 

About 1500 families in Boston. 

The worst cottages in New England are lofted. 

Noe beggars ; not 3 put to death for theft. 

About 35 rivers and harbours. 

About 23 islands and fishing places. 

The three Provinces of Boston, Mayne, and Hampshire 
are f of the whole in wealth and strenth. The other 
4 Provinces of Plymouth, Keneticut, Rhode Island & 
Kinnebeck being but one quarter of the whole in 

Not aboue 3 of their militarie men have ever been 
actual soldiers, but many are such soldiers as the artillerie 
men att London. 

Amongst their magistrates Leverett the Govern!, Major 
Dennison, Major Clarke, and Mr. Broadstreet are the 
most popular. 

rMr. Thatcher 

And amongst their ministers 1 Mr. Oxenbridge 

[Mr. Higgenson. 

There are noe musitians by trade. 

One dancing school was set up, but put down. 

A fencing school is allowed. 

1771.] THOMAS WHATELY. 265 

All cordage, saile cloth, & netts come from England. 
Noe cloth mad there worth aboue 4 s yard. 
Noe linnen of aboue 2 s 6*\ 
Noe allome, nor coperas, nor salt by the sunn. 
They take an oath of fidelity to the Govern*, but none 
to the King. 

The Gouern? chosen by every freeman. 

aboue 20 yeares 
worth about 200^ 

Not 12 ships of 200 tunn each. 
Not 500 fishing boats. 


Dear Sir, — I am sorry I did not see you before I left 
town, but you have assign'd the true reason for it ; our 
Parliamentary business left us time for no other. Your 
letter has travel'd after me into the country. I return 
that inclosed from M r Hughes, who, I own, seems to me, 
too ready to take an alarm of the Commissioners' designs 
against him, unless he has other grounds for apprehension 
than appear. The idea he suggests for you I should 
doubt is not easily carried into execution. I do not know 
that Lord Charles will remain here ; if he should, most 
probably his successor is determin'd, & therefore without 
better information and more encouragement that [sic] I 
can give you I rather wish you not to commit yourself in 
a pursuit which is likely to be fruitless. That of Ireland 
is more likely to succeed, if the establishment there 
should take place, & you give me great pleasure in ap- 
pearing to be more reconciled to it than you were. I 
shall have an opportunity of talking over the subject with 
you very soon ; & when I return to town I will take care 


to let you know that we may have some conversation on 
the subject. I am, dear Sir, 

Your most obed* & most humble serv*. 

Thomas Whately. 

Esher, 2 d April, 1771. 


Nassau Street, Soho, April 15 th , 1771. 

Sir, — Since my last no motion has been made in Coun- 
cil or Parliament respecting the Province or its Council, 
and from what was lately said to me at the Council 
Office & by two of the King's ministers, with the present 
state of Parliament, I take it for granted no consideration 
will be had of the Province affairs during this session. 

In consequence of the Lieut. Governour's refusing to 
consent to the grant made to me, in order to facilitate 
future payment, I wrote a letter to Lord Hillsboro', 
whereof you have a copy inclosed. Waiting on his 
Lords p the next day he said, he had directed M r Pownall, 
who had my letter, to write me an answer, and then went 
on to disclaim entirely all authoritative consideration of 
the matter complain'd of, as not belonging to his office, 
after which he proposed entring into conversation upon 
the subject, if desired, and on my assenting spoke to this 
effect, that the agencies of the Colonies bad been attended 
with great uncertainty & irregularity, so that sometimes 
it cou'd not be known who had good right to appear ; 
wherefore it was judged proper that the appearance 
shou'd be made by persons appointed by acts of the several 
Colonies. To this I answer'd that the inhabitants of 
Mass tta Province being incorporated by Charter their 
proper & lawful appearance might well & regularly be 
made in like manner as the corporations in England 
appear, that is, by their deed made in their corporate 
name, under their corporate seal, and that th' affixing of 

1771.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 267 

the great seal of the Province completed the deed con- 
taining th' authority to appear for it, all prior & prepara- 
tory proceedings being merged therein, to which his 
Lords p seem'd readily to assent. I agreed that th' appear- 
ance under an act wou'd be good & valid, observing that 
the threefold assent of the several branches of the Legis- 
lature made their act, altho' it was not cast into the form 
of a law, of whose nature th' appearance of the Province 
before the government here did no ways partake, but, in 
my opinion it was best for the Province to conform to the 
mode of proceeding of the corporations here establish'd 
by comon law & comon usage. Among other things his 
Lords p to my surprise said he consider'd the Council as 
private persons, who might have an agent if they pleased 
& pay him themselves ; whereas you are sensible they are 
an order of men instituted by Charter, & were cen- 
sured in their public capacity. I observed to him that 
a particular charge being made upon them, their sole 
authority was sufficient and proper to answer it, and that 
the Council being a constituent part of the body politic, 
their defence was as necessary to the good of the whole 
as the care & preservation of an essential part is to the 
body natural. What passed in this conversation is men- 
tioned for information sake, with exclusion of all farther 
use to be made of it. 

Thro' inadvertence I omited mentioning in my last, 
according to my intention, that the Clerk of the Council 
said, M r Oliver's affidavit was not laid before the Lords of 
the Comittee last summer, when they enquired into the 
state of the proceedings within the Province, tho' I doubt 
not they were made acquainted with it. 

I have for some time past, notwithstanding my several 
misfortunes at sea been much enclined to take a voyage, 
in order at the next session of the Gen 1 Court to settle & 
receive my old arrears, with a proper recompense for my 
late services, and to give that useful information in person 


which cannot so well be given in writing ; but a tedious 
cold caught' in bad weather, encreased by ministerial 
attendance & the confinement occasion' d by it, with the 
Province service having, with the remains of a troublesome 
cough, made me so tender that I have been advised not 
to undertake it, especially considering the present severe 
season, and moreover that the prime min r has lately in 
public declared, or at least discovered, his diffidence of the 
continuance of the peace, I earnestly pray that, according 
to the nature of my former request, a just & amicable 
settlement of my several demands may be made with all 
convenient speed. I desire only to receive the like justice 
from the Province which I have done to it, my conscience 
bearing witness that no consideration whatever hath at 
any time prevented, or in the least enclined me to forbear, 
the exertion of my best endeavours to advance the wellfare 
of the Province, and considering the difficult times & great 
occasions of my services, and that justice requires a due 
regard to be had to every thing proportionate to its nature 
& importance, I conclude they will not be undervalued ; 
and I have certainly made great sacrifices various ways 
to the Province service, for which the Gen 1 Court can give 
me no equivalent, and it is needless to say that in the 
days of severe trial I have stood up in defence of your 
rights & liberties, when no other of the numerous advo- 
cates of the Colonies appeared in like manner by their 
learning & fortitude to check the torrent of the most 
grievous proceedings against you. 

I am with the greatest respect for the Hon ble Council, 

Your most obedient and most humble servant. 


P. S. Inclosed you receive another copy of the letter 
to Lord Hillsborough, to be coiiiunicated to the House of 
Representatives, if the Council think fit. Having in the 

1771.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 269 

course of my late services had no connexion with M r 
De Berdt, who on my proposal wou'd not join me in a 
petition to the House of Coirlons, I desire my reward may 
be kept distinct. 

The Hon ble Sam l Danforth, Esq r . 


Nassau Street, Soho, May 6 th , 1771. 
Sir, — According to my information, received various 
ways, a project has been lately forrn'd for making the 
country lying between the rivers Kennebeck & S fc Croix a 
distinct province, & S r Fran 8 Bernard Govern r . Convers- 
ing hereupon with one of the principal private owners of 
lands in that country residing here he told me they had 
been made to believe that the value of their estates wou'd 
be much encreased by erecting this new government ; 
whereupon I observed that the principle on which the 
claim of the Crown was founded was equally subversive 
of the right of private proprietors & of the right which 
the Province had to the other lands & to the government 
of the whole by charter, and that my knowledge of the 
nature of the claim made in behalf of the Crown was 
acquired about seven years ago, when a design was form'd 
of taking the country lying between Penobscot & S* Croix 
from the Massa tts Province & joining it to that of Nova 
Scotia. He seem'd not a little alarmed at this, tho' no 
great progress has yet been made in this project. By my 
letters to the Gen 1 Court of the 10 th of June and 8 th of 
July, 1762, & 18 th of April, 1763, I acquainted them with 
the claim then set up for the Crown, & the grounds of it, 
together with my concern & proceedings therein, and the 
measure which on great deliberation, after consulting 
with the gentleman employed by reason of my ill state of 
health, I took in order to frustrate it ; that was by pre- 


senting a petition to the King, on behalf of M r Waldo's 
heirs, wherein I set forth the Province title in law & 
equity to the government & soil, saving such parts as 
belonged to private persons. Of this petition I sent 
several copies to the Gen 1 Court, and my conduct herein 
so far succeeded as to quiet the claim of the Crown from 
that time. I have also been inform'd that his Majesty's 
ministers have under consideration the establishment of 
the Quarter Master General's staff at Castle William. 

I am, with the greatest respect for the Hon ble the Coun- 
cil, Sir, 

Your most obedient and most humble servant. 


The Hon ble Sam l Danfokth, Esq\ 


Albemarle Street, June 2 d , 71. 
The Hon ble James Bowdoin, Esq? , 

Dear Sir, — I duly received your several letters & their 
inclosures. The points mentioned in them as matters 
which required the attention of your friends engaged my 
close & constant attention ; not more from what your 
information gave me hints of, than from what my own 
observation had led to. 

As to any intention here to alter your Charter, that en- 
tirely depended in my opinion upon the accounts that 
Ministry shou'd receive of the temper & spirit with which 
you acquiesced & submitted to the military peace estab- 
lishment. If you received it with that submission which 
you have done, & there were no grounds on which your 
friends cou'd bring forward the consideration in Parlia- 
ment, all idea of any civil alteration in the charters & 
constitution of the Provinces became absolutely unneces- 
sary. If, therefore those who might take up these affairs 

1771.] THOMAS POWNALL. 271 

in opposition to Ministry, not perceiving any ground 
on which to stand, nor looking to any support which 
might give effect to their endeavors, did not bring them 
forward in Parliament, it was clear from the begining 
of the session that Ministry themselves never intended to 
bring them forwards ; & I believe you may be assured 
that for the future the affairs of America will be kept 
clear of Parliamentary ground more & more every day. 
But as during the sitting of Parliament it is impossible to 
say what matters may arise, or what turn may be given 
to the most trifling circumstances, I defer'd writing any 
thing upon the subject untill I saw the session finally 
closed. And as during the whole session scarcely one 
word was said, nay, hardly one idea taken up, respecting 
American affairs, so now the session is ended there is 
nothing to write about them. Everything depends upon 
the course of events, & my real & firm belief as to the 
affairs of men is, that altho' the Supreme Governor of all 
things hath endowed us with principles that lead us to 
interest ourselves, & to mix our actions with the move- 
ments of the system, yet he directs by his counsels & 
determines by his will the final events both of men & 
things; in which light it may truly be said, that u the 
race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong," but 
that time & chance happeneth to all things. I think that 
doctrine cou'd never be with greater propriety applied to 
any circumstances & events than to the present, respect- 
ing the affairs of America. At the same time that this 
doctrine shews that it is not men who can command 
events, but events that call forth men, it teaches us this 
lesson that we shou'd be always ready & prepared to go 
into action whenever events may call us forth & wher- 
ever they may point the line of our conduct. 

Our attention to this duty can never be in any other 
way so well kept up as by the intercourse, correspondence 
& mutual information of men who wish well to the inter- 


ests, the liberty, & the peace of mankind, Tis with 
this view that I hope our correspondence will continue 
uninterupted. Tis under these hopes that I shall at 
all times wish to receive every matter of information and 
opinion from you. Tis in the same view that I shall 
be always ready to communicate every circumstance that 
may come into event here, & every idea that may lead to 
the existence of any measure that may any way affect the 
interest of America. 

You mention in your letter of Nov r 12 th a Comittee of 
both Houses of your Assembly having under considerat n 
the state of the masts & naval stores in the eastern parts 
of the Province. If they came to any resolutions or 
opinions upon that subject, I shou'd be obliged to you if 
you wou'd send me the report. We had a Comittee 
appointed here to consider the state of naval timber in 
general, which is found very much to require the atten- 
tion of government. I was of that Committee ; & we 
came to a general report, which was to be, but is not yet, 
printed.* I am of opinion the state of things must lead 
government to do something herein. I shall take occa- 
sions of conversing with the Secretary of the Admiralty 
upon the subject ; & I shou'd therefore be much obliged 
to you for your particular communication on this head, 
both as to facts & opinion. 

We have been so totally engaged during the sitting of 
Parliament that I have been absolutely prevented from 
that intercourse of social civilities which I hope, now 
Parliament is up, to enjoy with your sons & the friends 
you recommended to me. I hope within a few days to 
have the pleasure of their company to dine with me, 
which may lead to future opportunities of our being more 
together. I beg my respects and particular regards to all 
our mutual friends. I am, d r S r , 

Y r affec' friend & serv fc , T. Powxall. 

* If I can gett a spare copy you shall have it. — Marginal note by Gov. Poicnall. 

1771.] SAMUEL HOOD. 273 

I have an ugly inflammatory cold in my eyes. 

Since writing y e above I have had y e pleasure of seeing 
M r Stewart. Your son I find has entered himself at X 8fc 
Church, Oxford, — a very wise & commendable step in 
so young a man, & of which I think in every view he will 
reap y e advantage. By y e little I saw of him he appears 
to me to have more of y e gentleman & of y e honest man 
than one usually meets with. You are & ought to be 
very happy in him. M r Temple is out of town, by which 
I was disappointed y e pleasure of his company on y e King's 


Catherington, June 5 th , 1771. 

Dear Sir, — I have been favoured with your very 
obliging letter of Jan y 2 d , and wish to have received it 
from the hand of your son, from the pleasure I should 
have had in shewing him every mark of civility & re- 
spect in my power. My stay in London was very short. 
I liked not the manner in which things were going, and 
therefore chose to avoid every kind of altercation respect- 
ing America, from the certainty I have that there is no 
washing the blackmoor white. I like not the times, and 
am on that account well pleased to retire to my little farm. 
Upon the prospect of a rupture with Spain I was ap- 
pointed to the command of the Royal William, but as 
soon as peace was settled she was again fixed in ordinary. 
This comes in his Majesty's ship Captain, which wears 
the flag of Admiral Montagu, who is coming to command 
the King's naval forces in the room of M r Gambier ; and 
I dare say you will find him ready to assist, countenance 
& support the trade of the Colonies to the utmost of his 
power, and I flatter myself he will be an acceptable officer 
to the Province of the Massachusetts, where he is to fix 
his headquarters. 



M" Hood begs me to present her best wishes & regards 
to M rs Bowdoin and your daughter Temple, as well as to 
our much respected friends at Ten Hills, and I beg you 
will remember me to Cap* Erving & his family whom I 
have the pleasure of knowing, as well as all others who 
hold me in remembrance. Pray what is the fresh bustle 
between you & your Governor ? It has, by the help of 
your old friend Sir F., prevented the removal of the 
King's ships to Halifax, which I have reason to believe 
was intended. I shall always be glad to hear that you 
& M rs Bowdoin enjoy health & every comfort of life, and 
I entreat you will believe me, with great regard & esteem, 

dear Sir, 

Your most obedient humble servant. 

Sam. Hood. 


Southampton Street, Covent Garden, Oct 1 " 31 8t , 1771. 

Sir, — Upon endeavouring since my last to gain better 
knowledge of the dependance that could be had on what 
was said to me touching the readiness of persons in au- 
thority to meet the General Court in a good disposition 
to advance the public service, I was, to my surprize, told 
by the person concerned, that all that was said was with- 
out any authority on his part or mine, who was not em- 
powered to appear for the Province, and that the whole 
that passed was intended meerly as a personal conference 
between us, who wished well to the public service ; con- 
sequently what did pass was improper for farther com- 
munication, and in the course of a short conversation he 
afterwards added, that the ministers were always so dis- 
posed. However that may be, or the mistake in this case 
arose, I desire that no mention may be made of this 
matter, as it can do no good, and would tend to prevent 

1771.] WILLIAM BOLLAN". 275 

those personal conferences which certainly some times 
help to advance the Province service, and lay difficulties 
in the way of promoting it. 

Notwithstanding what has been said respecting the 
agency, under favour, I cannot forbear now saying mat- 

Iters are brought to such a pass that it wou'd be easier to 
make bricks without straw than it is to prosecute the 
Province service and defend its rights & interests without 
admissable authority from it, that is, an authority given 
by the constituent parts of the General Court, the Gover- 
nour, Council & Repres ves of it. In all controversies, you 
are sensible, the proper appearance of the parties is the 
first thing to be considered, and they who are to judge of 
the cause or matter in question will judge of this pro- 
priety, and, all things consider'd, it appears to me impos- 
sible to shake the determination that has been made 
respecting the appearance for the Province ; that under 
the present state of the agency no memorial or petition 
prepared & offer' d to the King in Council on behalf of 
the Province in maintenance of its right to the eastern 
country, or on other occasions, would be admited ; that 
nothing better can be expected in Parliament, or any of 
the Boards, especially in case of adverse or prejudicial 
proceedings ; so that in short the desirable & necessary 
service of the Province can by no means now be effectu- 
ally carried on. It is a most disagreable state to be 
provided with instructions, proofs, & other necessaries 
for promoting the service, without having the authority 
requisite for doing it. 

I am, with the greatest respect for the Hon ble the 
Council, Sir, 

Your most obedient & most humble servant. 

The Hon ble Sam l Danforth, Esq? 


To Benj* Franklin, Esq. Boston ' Noyr 5 ' 1771 ' 

Dear Sir, — I thank you for the copy of Instructions 
from the Com tee of Plantations to M r Randolph inclosed 
in the last letter [dated Feb? 5, 1771] with which you 
honoured me. His answer to y e inquiries he was directed 
to make (if to be had) and compared with the present 
state of this Province, would probably shew in the articles 
enumerated the increase since that time. In the present 
year, pursuant to a late Act of the Gen 1 Court for enquir- 
ing into the rateable estate of y e Province, lists of the 
poles and other rateables have been taken in each town, 
which at y e next session of the Court will be laid before 
y e House of Representatives in order to y e setling y e pro- 
portion each town is to bear of future Province taxes. 
As this may be a matter of curiosity to you, and. may 
serve (compared w th prior lists) to confirm your conjec- 
ture with regard to y e increase of the Colonists, I will 
endeavour to procure the sums total of the rateables 
and send to you. But when this can be done is quite 
uncertain, as it is uncertain when y e Gen 1 C* will meet, 
the meeting of which, at least till the next May (w ch is 
the Charter) session, seems to depend on instructions not 
known to be yet received. With regard to instructions, 
it is obvious from such as have lately operated, that 
there's a plan for annihilating y e Charter by them in 
a silent piecemeal manner, which if persisted in will be 
as effectual for that purpose as if done by act of Parlia- 
ment, as was lately intended by y e ministry. 

Through y e same influence the grants that have been 
made to you and Mr. Bollan by y e two Houses failed ; 
and 'tis not expected that any future grants will pass till 
y e agents are subjected in their appointment to the influ- 
ence of instructions. I have understood that in several of 
the Colonies, particularly in Virginia, the two Houses have 

1771.] JAMES BOWDOIN 277 

each a seperate agent, independent of y e Gov r who without 
any difficulty passes y e grants that from time to time are 
made them ; and that those agents are acknowledged 
as such by the ministry. But in this matter I have not 
been able to come at certainty. 

I heartily join with you in hoping that "in time har- 
mony will be restored between the two countries by 
leaving us in the full possession of our rights." 

I am much obliged to you for your kind expressions 
with regard to my son, to whom I have recommended 
it to put himself under the instruction of D r Priestly at 
Warrington, on y e plan pointed out in his Essay on Edu- 
cation for civil and active life. I think this will be no 
unsuitable introduction to y e study of y e Law, the profes- 
sion of w ch he prefers to any other. As I understand you 
are well acquainted with D r Priestly, I shall be much 
obliged if you'll favor him with a few lines to y e Doctor. 
I purpose he should return to N. Engl d in about 12 months 
with his uncle M r George Erving, who does me the favour 
to be the bearer of this letter. I beg leave to recommend 
M r Erving to you as a sensible worthy gentleman who will 
be able to give you full information with regard to the 
affairs and transactions in this country. 

I have repeatedly had great pleasure from y e perusal 
of the last edition of y r excellent letters which you did me 
the honour to send me. I have already thanked you for 
the book and now thank you for that pleasure. I wish it 
was in my power to execute in this instance the lex 
talionis, in which case you should receive as high a 
degree of pleasure as you have communicated ; and if all 
the readers of your book could carry y e same law into 
execution, you would be the happiest man existing. I 
wish the few letters w ch bear my signature in the same 
volume were more worthy the honor you have done them. 
I am with y e sincerest esteem, in w cb M? Bowdoin joins 
me, d r S r , Yr most ob* h ble Serv*- 

James Bowdoin. 



My Lord, — In January last I waited on your Lord- 
ship to request leave to introduce M r Temple and to ask 
what I assured myself your Lordship's justice would 
grant, — the fair & full hearing of his case. I was not 
admitted to }'our presence, but was assured by M r Cooper 
that your Lordship would see M r Temple in a few days. 
I afterwards took the liberty of writing to your Lordship 
requesting a speedy consideration of his case, & giving 
my testimony (in which all impartial men who know him 
will join me) of his uniformly good character & conduct 
as a servant of the Crown. M r Temple has had the 
honor of attending your Lordship, & of receiving from 
your own mouth the assurance that had your Lordship 
known sooner the real state of facts he would not have 
been suspended, and that your Lordship was sorry for it. 
This has been repeatedly confirm'd to me by M r Cooper, 
with further intimation that he would be provided for. 
M r Temple has waited ever since at a great expence, & 
distant from his family & domestick affairs, and now he 
tells me he is offer'd the place of an Inspector of the 
Customs in England, a post inferior to his former station, 
& of course degrading him. Suffer me to awaken your 
Lordship's feelings of humanity to the case of this op- 
pressed man, whose ability s & worth stand sacraficed to 
the machinations of a set of men whose whole conduct 
has been one continued scene of absurdity & in many in- 
stances of venality & wickedness, — is this man, standing 
acquitted at your Lordship's tribunal to be degraded ? 
And is Sir Francis Bernard, of whose delinquency I have 
good assurance, & conclusive proofs are in your Lord- 
ship's office, to be titled, to be pensioned, & to be honor- 
ably im ployed ! Are the blundering Commissioners at 
Boston to remain in that odious & to the nation an un- 

1771.] JOHN TEMPLE. 279 

fruitfull office ! I am sure, my Lord, all these things 
cannot be with your Lordship's approbation ; at present, 
however, I apply only for justice to the character & situ- 
ation of M r Temple, and I shall be happy to give your 
Lordship the praise of doing justice to injured merrit, and 
of restoreing to the service of the publick a man who in 
my eye (and I have known him from infancy) is incap- 
able of swerving from his duty, & who I am sure will do 
honor to your Lordship's appointment. I am, &c a 

B. Trecothick. 

London, 8 Nov, 1771. 

The Right Hon. Lord North. 


Dear Sir, — I take the earliest opportunity, after hav- 
ing received what I think a definitive answer from my Lord 
North, to return you my sincere thanks for the part you 
may have had in endeavouring to obtain from that minister 
a reparation of the injury & disgrace done my character 
by my having been superceeded in the Commission of Cus- 
toms for America unheard ! & even without a charge ! 
As all my solicitations & those of my friends for that 
purpose have been altogether fruitless ! I must take upon 
me to justify myself in the only way now left me. In this, 
from your many declarations of friendship, I can have 
no doubt you will heartily wish me honor & applause. 
In the execution of this business I shall, however, have 
occasion to publish extracts from some of your letters 
written to me, when Surveyor General in America, to 
which you can have no objection as such extracts will 
appear to have been written by the direction of M r Gren- 
ville, the then Minister, when you was Secretary to the 
Treasury. And the obliging mode & manner in which 
you conveyed his sentiments can't fail to do you honor. 


When I have done this & some other little matters, I shall 
lose no time in returning to N° America, from whence I 
have already been too long absent. But not without first 
returning many thanks for the very many & warm ex- 
pressions of friendship & kindness contain'd in your several 
letters to me abroad, as well as for the civility you have 
shewn me since my last arrival in England, and at the 
same time to assure you, that upon all occasions in Amer- 
ica I shall have real pleasure in obeying your commands, 
for that I am, dear Sir, 

Your most obedient and most humble servant. 

J. Temple. 

Cockspur Street, Pall Mall, 10 th Novem 1 ", 1771. 


London, 4th Dec. 1771. 

Dear Sir, — I cannot let the packet go, without in- 
forming you that I am well, and that I have accepted the 
place of Surveyor General of the Customs in England, 
about £600 a year, and 40 shillings a day when I travel. 
There are County Surveyor Generals already in England, 
but this is a new office, superior to them, Surveyor Gen- 
eral all over England ; it is not the thing that I wished, 
nor what I had reason to expect ; the Commissionership 
of Ireland, was long held out to my view, but in order to 

* William Samuel Johnson was the elder son of Rev. Samuel Johnson, of Stratford, Conn., 
and was born Oct. 7, 1727. He graduated at Yale College in 1744, and after a short expe- 
rience as a lay reader in the Episcopal Church studied law. In 1761 he was chosen a mem- 
ber of the General Assembly of Connecticut; and in 1765 he was a delegate to the Stamp 
Act Congress. In the following year he was sent to England as Special Agent of the 
Colony. In 1771 he returned home, and in May, 1772, he was appointed one of the Judges 
of the Superior Court. During the war he came under suspicion of " having correspond- 
ence with the enemy," and was arrested for treason, but subsequently released. In May, 
1787, he was elected President of Columbia College, New York, which office he held for 
thirteen years. His last years were passed in retirement, and he died at Stratford, Nov. 
14, 1819. See Beardsley's Life and Times of W. S. Johnson. — Eds. 

1771.] JOHN TEMPLE. 281 

ease the Crown of a pension, that rascal Bernard had the 
preference of me. But, I believe no man ever spoke 
plainer to Lord North than I did upon the occasion ; 
among other things, I told him, I should as soon have 
thought of the famous Jonathan Wild's being appointed a 
Commissioner, as the more infamous Bernard ; finally, I 
would not accept, till the salary was advanced from 400 
to 600£, and pretty good assurances of my being pro- 
moted to the English or Irish Revenue Board, as soon as 
possible ; as things have turned out, 'tis lucky I was not 
appointed to the new Excise Board in Ireland ; the Com- 
mons there have voted it an useless Board, will make no 
provision for its support, and it's generally thought the 
institution will fail. The attempt, even, has overset 
Townshend, and Bernard looks like a chagrined rascal, 
as he deserves. 

I hope you found all your family well and that you are 
happy, happy in independent private life, which is the 
best of all. I should have told you, before I accepted, I 
had determined, upon Bernard's appointment, to lay my 
case before the public, and retire into private life ; this 
my Lords Temple and Chatham approved and said, they 
would bring the affair into the House of Lords, as my 
friends Meredith, Grenville, Trecothick, Stewart, Cole- 
brook intended to do the same in the Commons, but I 
considered, that though they would have a fine flourish, I 
should be sacrificed, and so I took the other course, still 
with their approbation. Things are much as when you 
left us ; the Princess D. of Wales cannot live many weeks, 
said to be rotten with a cursed evil ; Squire Morgan mar- 
ried and disgraced ; the Q. of Denmark detected in in- 
fidelity ; the D. of Glouster not likely to recover, and in 
short, all the horned cattle into disorder. 

No Bishop yet intended for America, and I hope to find 
you alter your sentiments about that matter. I have con- 
verted Whately, Trecothick and others ; Dr Berkely and 


his family are very well ; by the last ship to Boston, I sent 
you a parcel I rec'd from the old lady,* which I hope you 
have received. My compliments to your father and be- 
lieve me to be, with unfeigned esteem and regard, my 
dear Sir, 

Your most ob fc and most h ble ser vt . 

John Temple. 


Dear Sir, — I take the earliest opportunity (after hav- 
ing a definitive answer from the Minister) to acquaint you 
that I have accepted the place of Surveyor General of the 
Customs in England. It is not an appointment I wished 
for, nor the one I think I had a right to expect ; a Com- 
missionership of Ireland was long held out to my view, 
tho' without an absolute promise. The struggle was 
considerable between my friends & such of the Ministry 
as were desirous to ease the King of the pension given to 
the meritorious Governor Bernard, who has got that place ; 
& I believe, all things considerd they would not have 
ventured to have given him the preference but that they 
thought I was, or soon shou'd be, necessitous, & therefore 
would accept what I have now done, which for ten days 
together I absolutely refused to my Lord North in person, 
& had I been a single man would at all events have reso- 
lutely persisted in refusing. 

I have done the best I could (with all my friends & 
relations here in opposition) & tho' it will not be affluence, 
yet it will make me & my family comfortable, & I hope 
happy. My Lord Temple has acted the part of a real 
father to me ; my Lord Chatham that of an able kind 
adviser, and shou'd either of them ever have ministerial 
power again, I doubt not I should experience the influence 
of it. 

* The wife of Rev. Dr. George Berkeley. — Eds. 

1771.] JOHN TEMPLE. 283 

In many respects it is with great concern that I am 
seperated from my native Country, which I sincerely 
love, & shall always wish well to. But it seems to have 

been a sine qua non with Lord H h (at the earnest 

& united instance of the good Mr. Hutchinson, Oliver, 
the Commissioners, & those devoted to their measures) 
that Mr. Temple shou'd not return to America in a public 
character, & this was carried so far by his Lordship, that 
the K. himself signified to Lord North that so it must be, 
at least for the present, the system adopted for America 
in some measure depending on it. I am however happy 
in reflecting that, whatever degree of sacrifice I may 
have met with, it has been on account of my supposed 
partiality to the country that gave me birth ; that I have 
preserved my integrity through the whole of my publick 
services ; and that I am here look'd upon by both Ministry, 
& those in opposition, as an honest faithfull servant of 
the Crown, which I think almost as desirable as the 
title of Excellency with a sacraficed, or wounded con- 
science & 1600£ a year, torn from an injured people, 
however justly they may be branded with being deceit- 
ful to one another, & with having been shamefully pusi- 
lanimous in the publick cause ! A pusilanimity & mean 
acquiescence that has in some measure sacraficed every 
friend they had here, from the noble Earl of Chatham 
down even to a colony agent or private gentleman, which 
in silent mortification is felt to the quick, and from such 
experience I believe it will be with some caution that any 
person of rank or consequence will ever again step forth 
in their cause, or pledge themselves for American firm- 
ness ! even in defence of their own freedom ; & yet I 
think the prospect is, that they may have occasion for 
them. Lord Hillsborough's disposition (from his despi- 
cable opinion of their spirit) seems to be to drive the 
Americans to their mettle, if they have any (which is 
really doubted here) but, as 't is said, cowards provoked 


will do wonders, so perhaps it may be verified in the 
Colonies. A little more sincerity, & manly firmness in 
the first instance would, however, have done all they 
wish'd, & would have saved them a deal of exertion which 
will now be found necessary to regain the high character 
that North Americans once honorably sustained in this 
kingdom, & indeed every where else till the unfortunate 
& (I could wish) ever to be forgotten year 1770, when, with 
every thing at stake, they threw up the important game 
when they had all the trumps in their own hands, & 
like a Spaniel meanly cringed, & kiss'd the rod that 
whip'd 'em. 

I have passed my time ever since I left N. England in 
a state of much anxiety, & it has been no small addition 
to it the thought that you have been thus long incum- 
ber'd w th my family. Believe me, Sir, I have a sence of 
the obligation full equal to what any body could wish or 
desire, and I shall be happy to have an oppert unity of 
discovering it in the strongest manner. I have written 
to my brother to make the necessary preparations for 
their coming home to me as soon as the season will per- 
mit, & I shall not have a mind at ease untill I see them. 
I would even come over myself for them, but that my ill- 
health, when at sea, is so very great, that I fear I should 
rather be an incumbrance than a comfort to them, & 
pimps at the same time be render'd unfit for the extensive 
field of business I am entering into. I cannot conclude 
without once more assuring you of the gratefull sence I 
have of the care & tenderness you have shewn them, 
and that I most sincerely & heartily wish both you & M rs 
Bowdoin all health & happiness, being with every senti- 
ment of respect, friendship & affection, dear Sir, 

Your most obedient, and most humble servant, 

J. Temple. 

London, 4 Dec r , 1771. 

To the IIon'ble James Bowdoin Esq b . 

1771 J JAMES GAMBIER. 285 


Orchard street, 25 Dec r , 1771. 

Mr. G. Erving, my dear Sir, sent me this morning 
your much esteemd kind letter ; having receivd your 
subsequent one, mentioning his sailing ten days before its 
date, I was a little uneasy for his safety, till last week 
Mr Temple told me he had met him. I was the next day 
visited by the gout in my foot or I woud have endeavor'd 
finding out Mr Gr. Erving, from the wish of embracing 
every opp y of shewing any little civility in my power to 
any friend of yours. The quadrant arrivd safe ; I hopd 
you woud have let it remaind with you as a memento of 
our friendly converse, while I was for a short time happy 
at Boston. I am much obligd to you and my other friends 
for your favorable opinion and good wishes. I have all 
the reason to expect redress and compensation, as I have 
already been graciously receiv'd on all sides ; yet I look 
back to America with pleasure as I left it with regret. I 
saw Pownall well the other day ; when next I have that 
pleasure, my foot being still on the couch, I shall not fail 
to make your compliments. M r Bowdoin did me the favor 
of a visit, & we have dind together at my friend DurelFs, 
who speaks very highly of him and with no more than 
strict truth ; he is greatly improvd and will, believe me, do 
you credit. Durell thinks as I do, that twill be critically 
a great pity not to give him another year in England, 
as he is in the chain & progress of improvement, which 
twoud be cruel to break. My gout has prevented me 
seeing him yet so often as I coud wish & I have been 
amazingly hurried & my time not yet in the least my 
own, but monopolized by levees, drawing rooms, Court at- 

* James Gambier was born in 1723, and died in 1789. In 1778, in which year he was 
made an Admiral, he commanded on the North American coast ; and he was afterward 
transferred to the Jamaica station. He was father of a more distinguished son, the first 
Lord Gambier. See Dictionary of National Biography, vol. x. p. 393. — Eds. 


tendance & business. Oft have I wishd myself quiet and 
rationally happy at Boston again. Will ye receive me at 
Boston if I quit this noisy metropolis of vanity & insin- 
cerity, and Americanize in content & ease, and bid adieu to 
ambition and all its gaudy allurements, unproductive of real 
happiness, which after four and thirty years unremitting 
service I begin to experience is not to be found in courts 
or senates ? Twas with the utmost difficulty I brought 
my dear M rs G. alive home, given over most part of the 
passage, which was indeed one continued storm. She 
expected every moment to expire, children sick, maids ill 
& worse than useless, and a terribly mannd ship. You 
will believe I had enough on my thoughts, and little rest. 
We cordially hope you & M rs Bowdoin, and M rs Temple & 
little ones are all well & happy ; our best compliments 
& good wishes attend you & them. Pray tender mine to 
my much esteemd friend Col. Erving & the old gentleman 
& Doctor Cooper; his friend Dr. Franklyn was here the 
other morning in health, & talks next year of visiting 
America. Pray tell the ladies I deliverd safe their com- 
mands. Our little Bostonian is much admird. She does 
no discredit I assure you to her native country. We 
trouble you w th our regards & good wishes to Bob Temple 
& his family. I hope he will make no more trips to the 
southward, but stay at home and attend to domestick 
happiness, and the care & education of his children. 

All seems quiet here ; may harmony and universal cor- 
diality reign at Boston, and may my friends there live 
long & happy. Adieu and believe me with great regard, 
dear Sir, 

Your faithfull & obedient servant. 

J. Gambier. 

1772.] JOHN TEMPLE. 287 


To the Right Honorable, the Lords Commissioners of his Majesty's 

The Memorial of Jn° Temple, Esq r , late a Commission 17 
of the Customs in America, humbly sheweth : 

That your Lordship's memorialist was in the year 
1760 appointed Lieut* Governor of the Province of New 
Hampshire & Surveyor General of the Customs in N th 
America, in which last character he had the honor to 
serve his Majesty under the administration of the Duke 
of Newcastle, the Earl of Bute, M r Grenville, the Marquis 
of Rockingham, & the Duke of Grafton as First Lords of 
the Treasury. That he had the happiness to receive from 
the Secretary of the Treasury (through the Board of 
Customs in London) their Lordships' high satisfaction in 
his conduct & deportment at the head of the Revenue of 
N. America, & from some of them, the most ample & im- 
mediate approbation of his faithful & unwearied services 
on the most trying occasions in that country, particularly 
that of the Stamp Act. 

That in 1767, unsolicited & unexpected, your Lordships' 
memorialist was appointed one of the new Board of five 
Commiss rs constituted for N th America, two of which 
number had been inferior officers under your memorialist 
in the Northern District, & another (who stood first in the 
commission) was taken from being the Plantation Clerk 
at the Custom House in London. In this situation your 
Lordships' memorialist, with the utmost zeal, fidelity, & 
attention to the King's service, engaged in the business of 
the new Commission, but was very early so unfortunate 
as to discover a disposition & design in his brethren, not 
only to traduce & depreciate his late conduct as Surveyor 
General, but also by divers methods to lessen him in the 
esteem of his superiors at the Treasury, which (from the 


cast of the times, from the troubles in N th America, & 
from S r Fran 8 Bernard's known enmity to your Lordships' 
memorialist for having detected him in a very close con- 
nection with a notorious plunderer of the public revenue) 
they had but too advantageous an opportunity of effecting 
to his prejudice, & in which unhappy business they with S r 
Francis appeared to be much more earnest & intent than 
(by moderation, temper & a manly, impartial use of 
power) to regulate & improve the revenue under this new 
form of managem*, & of conciliating as much as possible 
the minds of the people in general to the same, which 
might have been done to a very great degree at the first 
setting out, had the Commiss rs taken that line of conduct 
(which your memorialist often & strenuously recommended) 
rather than that of entering into ignominious cabals, unbe- 
coming personal quarrels, & irritating, unnecessary disputes 
with the inhabitants of every rank in that country, and 
then upon the slightest or perhaps without any real occasion 
discovering such extraordinary timidity as even children 
ought to be ashamed of, by which all that deference & re- 
spect due to the members of a public Board became totally 
destroyed. Thus unhappily circumstanced your Lordships' 
memorialist humbly solicited no less than thirteen times 
for leave to come home to England, as will appear by his 
letters of the 25 of January & 24 of November, 1768, of 
the 21 of Feb y , 14 of May, 25 Oct r , 1769, and 22 d of 
March, 1770, to his Grace the Duke of Grafton, then 
First Lord of the Treasury ; & by his letters of the 15 & 
27 of May, 13 of June, 2 & 14 of July, 16 of August, 7 
of Sep r & 15 of Oct r , 1770, to the Right Honble. Lord 
North inclosing divers papers relating to the service ; of 
all which he was so unhappy as to find no notice taken, 
nor was any permission granted for his coming home to 
England. Thus after persevering more than three years 
in the most disagreeable & unhappy situation, observing 
at the same time the business of the revenue, & (as he 

1772.] JOHN TEMPLE. 289 

apprehends) the revenue itself, going fast to ruin & destruc- 
tion, he ventured to come home without leave, trusting 
entirely to your Lordships' candor & humanity for so 
doing, seeing that M r Robinson, a brother Commissioner, 
& M r Hallowell, an under officer, had before done the like 
with impunity. But on his arrival in England your 
Lordships' memorialist had the mortification to hear that 
he had been some months superceded in the American 
Commission by the same M r Hallowell, an inferior officer. 
Soon after he had the honor of a hearing from Lord North, 
who discovered a fair disposition for repairing the injury 
your memorialist had sustained, both in his character & 
fortune, by being thus superceded unheard & even without 
a charge. 

That your Lordships' memorialist hath lately had the 
honor of being appointed Surveyor General of the Cus- 
toms in England, with 300 £ a year over & above the 
salary established, in which station (though a degradation 
in rank) he means to exert his utmost to approve himself 
to your Lordships for further favor, when a vacancy may 
happen at either the English or Irish Board of Revenue. 
That he has been more than a year in England (to the 
entire neglect of his private concerns in America) attend- 
ing & solliciting your Lordships on his truely unfortunate 
case, and at a very great expense, near a thousand pounds 
of his private fortune, over & above the charges of his 
voyage, & the loss he must unavoidably sustain in the 
disposal of his house, furniture, slaves, horses, carriages, 
&c, by the sudden & unexpected removal of himself & 
family from that country. That he humbly prays your 
Lordships will take his singularly hard & unfortunate 
case into consideration & grant him such compensation 
from the American revenue chest or otherwise as to your 
Lordships' candid judgment shall seem proper. And 
your memorialist is the more encouraged to hope for 
this mark of your Lordships' candour & justice as M r 



Hallowell (an inferior officer) had an allowance of guinea 
a day for the most part of the time that he was in Eng- 
land, holding at the same time either the post of Comp- 
troller at Boston or that of Collector at Piscataqua, & for 
some part of the time the emoluments of both ; besides 
an allowance from your Lordships of seventy odd pounds 
for his passage to & from Boston. And all this in addi- 
tion to his being constituted a Commissioner of the 
American Board in the room of your Lordships' memorial- 
ist, who, with all humility and as in duty bound shall 
ever pray, &c. 

J. Temple. 

London, Feb? 7, 1772. 


Stratford, April 30 th , 1772. 

Dear S r , — I received with great pleasure y r favour 
acquainting me with the appointment you have received 
of Survey r General of the Customs in England, which I 
esteem far preferable to the Irish intention, which, tho' 
more lucrative, yet must have exposed you to the resent- 
ment of a whole nation, a situation I would not endure 
for any pecuniary consideration whatever. England too 
is a more agreeable country to reside in than Ireland, & 
will open to you future views of further advancement. 
I sincerely congratulate you on this occasion, & wish you 
every felicity that the most fond affection can suggest. 
Your success must have greatly chagrined several on that, 
as well as on this, side of the water. I am only sorry 
that y r native country will in future be deprived of you, 
but I trust your affection for it will never fail & you will 
have frequent opportunities of rendering it very essential 
services where you are, which I trust you will never fail to 
embrace, & to make the most of upon all occasions. There 
is certainly a duty owing to the country that gives us 


birth, & we have naturally an affection for it. A wise & 
good man will indulge the one & never fail to discharge 
the other upon all proper occasions. You understand our 
interests & our rights & will, I doubt not, advance the one, 
& defend the other, to the utmost of your power. In one 
thing only, that of an American Episcopate, I think you 
much mistaken. I have no doubt it would be both poli- 
tically useful & greatly serve the interests of religion, 
the most important of all others. You will, I trust, one 
day see it in that light, & will then afford your aid to 
effect it. Till you are convinced it will be beneficial I do 
not ask y r assistance to promote it, but let me beg you 
will not oppose it until you have given the subject, as it 
merits, a very mature & serious consideration. I have 
no news to tell you. In this part of the world we are 
very quiet & peaceable. At Boston, I see, there is yet 
some agitation. For myself I am return'd to my old 
industrious, busy course of life. This gives me bread. I 
eat it in peace, & am therewith content. I have a lovely 
family about me, & in them I am blessed & happy. I 
should not certainly refuse any thing that would honestly 
better my external circumstances, which are indifferent 
enough, but I will seek nothing by dishonourable means, 
will have nothing that may not be enjoyed with peace, 
reputation & the good of those with whom I live. I thank 
you very heartily for the care you took of M rs Berkeley's 
packet. When you have opportunity, pray present my 
most affectionate complim t8 .to that good family & to their 
very worthy neighbours, for whom I shall ever retain the 
most sincere respect & affection, & am, d r S r , 

Your most obedient & most humble servant. 

W M Sam a Johnson. 

John Temple, Esq*. 



Boston, May 9 th , 1772. ^ 

Dear Sir, — We had great pleasure from y e informa- 
tion given by y r letter of y e 4 th of Dec r last. Your ap- 
pointment to office in England in the present circumstances 
of things is preferable to an appointment in America ; but 
it is probable you may have an opportunity after some 
time of getting an establishment here, if you choose it. 

Though a Comissionership in Ireland was long held out 
to y r view, it is lucky you were not appointed to it, as y e 
appointment of y e new Board, if still subsisting, has given 
& will give y e people there great uneasiness, and they in 
return will endeavour to make the holder of it as uneasy 
as they can. Gov r Bernard, who was made head of that 
Board, as soon as he found it so disagreeable to y e people 
there, I understand, imediately quitted it, on being assured 
his pension, tho much less than y e salary of a Comissioner, 
should be continued to him. In doing which I think he has 
acted a prudent part. This gentleman's merits have been 
strangely overlooked. When will he have the reward to 
which they intitle him ? I cannot view the conduct of y e 
Americans in a light so unfavourable to them as you seem 
to. Throughout y e continent they made y e fullest decla- 
ration of their rights, and still abide by it. It was backed 
by associations among the merchants not to import till 
those rights were acknowledged by y e repeal of the acts 
of Parliament for raising a revenue from America. The 
associations, with little deviation, was maintained a con- 
siderable time, & so far they discovered a laudable spirit. 
When they were broken, w ch first took place at N. York, 
whose example y e other Colonies were necessitated to 
follow, it was matter of surprize they had continued so 
long ; for besides y e operation of interest there were y e 
underworkings and lies of emissaries to make them jealous 

1772.] JAMES BOWDOItf. 293 

and diffident of each other ; to which may be added the 
little effect of y e non-importation occasioned by y e de- 
mands from y e Russians & others about that time for 
British goods, — all which circumstances brought on the 
breach, which, I think, merits no worse name than a 
misfortune, and which in a like situation would have hap- 
pened among any other people under the sun. I don't 
mean to justify the whole of their conduct, but to intimate 
that it has probably been as fit and proper as in like cir- 
cumstances could reasonably be expected. We have this 
consolation, that nature, whose operation is not controul- 
able by acts of Parliament, will in time free us from all 
unreasonable impositions, if Parliament should refuse to 
do it. Capt. Phillips desired me to thank you for solicit- 
ing in his favour, of which Jemmy informed him. His 
being so long neglected has had an ill effect on his health. 
It is an act of justice that he should be provided for in 
future, and compensated for the time he has lost since his 
ejectment from Castle W m . Your regard for so worthy a 
man will induce you to use your good offices to procure 
an appointment for him. I am sorry your anxiety has 
been increased from an apprehension that your family has 
been an incumbrance to us. So far from it, that it has 
added greatly to our happiness ; and it is with y e utmost 
regret we part with our dear daughter & her charming 
little boy. It is, however with y e hope of seeing them 
again with you in a few years ; but if Providence should 
deny us that felicity, may it grant to each of you a long 
and happy life, and in y e next scene, the invisibility of 
which makes it too little regarded, admit you to joys per- 
manent and uninterrupted. We could not consent to part 
with your little girl, & should be glad to stop Grenville, 
if it would not be a disadvantage to him. With y e sin- 
cerest wishes for y r prosperity, in w ch M rs Bowdoin joins 
me, I am, w th great regard & affection, d r Sir, 
Y r most obed. hble. seiV. 



Boston, Sept. 2, 1772. 

Dear Sir, — Having so good an opportunity by Capt. 
Linzey, I embrace it to express my best regards for your- 
self and M rs Hood and all the branches of your family. 
Capt. Linzey has just made himself happy by entering 
into the connubial state,* in which I wish him as many 
young Linzies as he would choose to have. My son is 
returned to America much mended in his health. I am 
greatly obliged to you (as he also is) for your kind ex- 
pressions with regard to him. I observe you are not well 
pleased with the times, nor y e manner in which things are 
going. They are both bad enough ; and I believe very 
few approve them but such as are interested in the sup- 
port of y e present system, a system founded on venality 
and corruption, and whose end, at least whose tendency, is 
despotism. I wish y e operation of it, if it must operate, 
was confined to your island, but in fact it seems as exten- 
sive as the dependencies thereon, and is most certainly 
felt in America. Ever since your patron, M r Pitt, quitted 
the helm things have gone wrong, and I am afraid will 
c6ntinue to do so till he again shall guide it, or one of 
his sentiments, honesty, and abilities. But enough of 
politics, since y e present system affords so little matter for 
pleasing reflection. M rs Bowdoin has lost her daughter, 
and never expects to see her again on this side y e water. 
We have just heard of her arrival in England, where M r 
Temple has a handsome appointment, and where she may 
be happy in seeing M rs Hood. Your friends at Ten Hills 
are well. They and Capt. Erving thank you for yr. kind 
enquiries, and send their compliments. M re - Bowdoin's 

* Captain John Linzee, then commanding the Beaver, married Susanna Inman, Sept. 
1, 1772. See 2 Proceedings, vol. x. p. 19. — Eds. 

1772.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 295 

best regards & wishes wait on M rs Hood, & I beg you will 
permit me to accompany them. I am with great truth & 
respect, d r Sir, 

Yr. most obed* hble. serv* 

J. B. 


Boston, Sept r 29, 1772. 

Dear Sir, — You judged perfectly right, and with a 
candour that has always distinguished you, in imputing my 
late silence to any cause rather than disregard and neglect. 
These can never take place so long as I retain any remem- 
brance of the civilities of Gov r Pownall. A constitutional 
weakness of eyes w ch always made writing painful, and a 
fall from my horse, the effects of which I have not yet 
got rid of, have occasioned my not acknowledging sooner 
the receipt of several letters you favoured me with. As 
to the proceedings of y e Gen 1 Court relative to timber, the 
two Houses in consequence of y e Gov r ' s speech on that 
subject, which greatly faulted the people who had setled 
in the townships lately granted by the Gen 1 C* to y e east- 
ward of Penobscot River, and w ch intimated y e propriety 
of removing them, thought it necessary in y e June session, 
1771, to write to their agents on that head, and accordingly 
wrote them a long letter to place in a favorable light the 
people who had setled in those townships, and to assist 
them in obtaining the King's confirmation of the Province 
grants ; and also to give the s d agents information con- 
cerning the mast-trees, lumber business, &c, that they 
might defend y e Province against the charge of negligence 
in preserving y e King's timber. In one of those townships 
(Machias) there being a disturbance among y e people a 
com tee £ (] ounc ii was appointed to go thither, k one of 
their instructions was to enquire about y e growth of mast 
timber in them, and whether the setlers there wasted and 


destroyed it. The com tee went accordingly, and have re- 
ported their proceedings to y e Gov r & Council. The report 
was made last Sept r , and a copy of it has been sent by y e 
Gov r to Lord Hillsborough. This copy, 1 suppose, your 
brother M r Sec ry Pownall can furnish you with, as can D r 
Franklin & M r Bollan with the letter above mentioned. 

For several years past the lands of y e Kennebeck Prop" 
have been pillaged of mast timber by y e agents of the 
mast contractors which occasioned the Prop rs ' com tee to 
write to Gov r Wentworth, y e Surveyor Gen 1 of y e Woods, 
to prevent it ; but he says it is not in his power, 
as he is only an executive officer, that his licenses only 
respect the King's woods, and that y e mast-cutters are sub- 
ject to prosecution, if they cut contrary to their licenses. 
As the Prop rs did not incline to incur y e expence of a law 
suit, they laid their case before administration by peti- 
tions dated in December last, — one addressed to y e Lords 
of y e Admiralty forwarded by Gov r Wentworth, a dupli- 
cate of the same forwarded by Admiral Montagu, and a 
second petition of the same tenor addressed to the Lords 
of the Treasury, forwarded by Gov r Hutchinson to Lord 
Hillsborough. To y e petitions are annexed a state of y e s d 
Prop™' title, an account of their great expence & exertions to 
settle that country, & extracts from y e acts of Parliament 
for preservation of white pines to shew the s d acts do not 
relate to pines growing within our Kennebeck purchase. 
These petitions the gentlemen who forwarded them in- 
formed us some time ago have been received, but we have 
not learnt that they have produced the desired effect. In 
y e mean time the mast cutters continue their depredations 
as before ; and are now preparing, as we are informed, to 
make great destruction of our property the next winter. 
I suppose you can see those petitions at the Boards to 
w oh they are addressed, and also the letters sent with 
them from the gentlemen who forwarded them. If there 
be any observations in any of those letters to the disad- 

1772.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 297 

vantage of the s d Prop 18 ' title, which has lately been appre- 
hended, I earnestly beg y e favour you will procure for 
me a copy of such parts of them as contain those observa- 
tions. I will replace the cost of it, be greatly obliged to 
you, and subject to such injunctions concerning it as you 
think proper. M r Y assail (Florentius Vassall) has a copy 
of the s d petitions and papers annexed which were sent to 
him by the Kennebeck com tee , and which I doubt not that 
gentleman will readily communicate to you. By the next 
vessell (if my eyes will permit) I intend myself the 
honour of writing to you again, and in the mean time 
with great esteem beg leave to subscribe myself, d r Sir, 
Y r most obed* hble. serv*. 


Boston, Oct 24, 1772. 

Dear Sir, — By his Majesty's schooner Sultana I had 
the pleasure of writing to you y e 29 th of Sept r . The re- 
moval of y e General Assembly to Boston, as well as from 
it, has proved alike ineffectual to bring them to an acqui- 
escence with ministerial measures. The air of Cambridge 
& of Boston is equally unsuitable to make them view 
objects as they appear in the Court medium. That of 
Penobscott might have some effect upon them, the salu- 
brity of which you have experienced. Would it not be 
worth while for our state physicians to prescribe it ? 
Perhaps it may have some quality to rectify y e defects 
of vision, 

to purge from thick films the mental ray 

And on their sightless eye-balls pour the day." 

I believe on my conscience it would evidence the skill of 
those physicians in their profession as much as some other 
of their prescriptions. What past on y e subject of remov- 


ing the Assembly back to Boston the prints have informed 
you ; and what has past since respecting y e Governor's 
receiving his salary from y e Crown has been conveyed to 
you thro y e same channel. You Governors are posted 
on very advantageous ground. You can attack when you 
please ; are always sure of the last fire, and by that means 
of coming off with advantage, or at least of retiring from 
y e field of battle without the danger of immediate pursuit. 
The last message, and which put an end to the session, 
carried y e air of victory, which probably would have been 
disputed, if opportunity had been given for it ; but that, 
though generous in itself, might not be deemed a proper 
act of generalship. However, 'tis possible that in y e course 
of y e next campain y e battle may be renewed upon the 
same ground. But to speak plain English, the Assembly 
apprehend the Province Charter determines y e manner in 
which the Gov r shall be supported, viz., by grant from y e 
Assembly ; that the present mode of supporting him is 
inconsistent with y e Charter ; and that he so far forth 
ceases to be y e Charter Governor. If this be a just ground 
for uneasiness, the support of the Judges of our Superior 
Court in the same way must be abundantly more so. 
Their allowance, 'tis true, is too small ; but it has been 
uniformly y e same for many years. The present Bench 
therefore, who well knew before their appointment the 
emoluments of their office, have no reason to complain. 
When y e last usual grant was made they wanted but a 
single vote for the enlargement of it ; and it is probable 
that at y e next session the Assembly, if not prevented by 
ministerial interference, will enlarge it. In an indepen- 
dent state it is proper the Judges should be independent, 
as in England. But in a subordinate state, as this Prov 
ince, it is not so clear that they should be independent 
of its Assembly. It is easy to conceive, and we have now 
abundant facts to verify it, that a parent state by superior 
power may impose taxes on, & transfer its revenue & other 

1772.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 299 

laws to, the subordinate state; whence, as well as from 
other sources, many cases .determinable by those Judges 
may arise, which shall deeply affect the rights & property 
of the latter. Now, to instance in this Province, who 
are likely to be appointed Judges if the Assembly has no 
check upon them ? Will they not be such as the minister 
shall instruct his Governor to appoint ? And to such 
appointment is any effectual opposition to be expected 
from a Council whose existence every year depends on y e 
Governor who holds his office at the will of the minister 
of the foreign state? It is morallv certain the Judges 
will be such as the minister will approve, and in no long 
time after the establishment will be such as will be sent 
from the foreign state with mandamus to y e Governor to 
appoint them to that office. This would probably be y e 
case even if y e establishment were derived from y e Province 
legislature, who ought to be, if the measure be a fit one, 
the enacters of it ; and it is equally probable that such 
Judges would not be very tender of the property and 
rights or even the lives of the Provincials where they in- 
terfered with ministerial measures, the tendency or the 
end of which might be to reduce them to a state of abso- 
lute subjugation. Hence it appears to me a proper infer- 
ence that in the present state of things, the Judges of our 
courts, even if the Province Charter were wholly silent 
about it, ought to depend for their support on grants 
from the Assembly. But what shall we say if the report 
be true that y e ministry have undertaken to provide for 
the support of y e Judges ? Will it not be contrary to, and 
so far vacate the Charter? Will it not place them in 
absolute dependence on minis rs , and therefore unless they 
will forfeit their stipends must they not in a judicial way, 
which will be an effectual one, and for w ch there will not 
be wanting opportunities, endeavour to confirm & estab- 
lish all the measures of ministry, however oppressive and 
enslaving ? What those measures will be in their nature 


& tendency our experience in the last seven years affords 
sufficient means to conjecture. Perhaps it may be said their 
stipends were made certain to them by act of Parliament. 
But are not acts of Parliam* acts of ministry ? Cannot 
they alter or reverse them at pleasure ? And with respect 
to Parliament itself is it not in y e hands of ministry as 
clay in the hand of the potter ? These questions I am 
not capable of resolving ; but if those that are should find 
sufficient reason to resolve them affirmatively, will not y e 
Judges, though provided for by act of Parliament be in a 
state of absolute dependence on ministry ? and will not 
the evils hinted at above be the natural consequence? 
What effects will be produced by these new mancevres, 
added to those of a few past years, time will unfold ; as 
it will that I am & always shall be, with y e most perfect 
esteem, d r Sir, 

Y r most ob* & very hble. serv* 

James Bowdoin. 


Boston, Nov* 2, 1772. 
Dear Sir, — Your several letters and the enclosures 
relative to Capt. Phillips's appointment to be fort major 
of Castle W m I communicated to him. He is very sen- 
sible of the extraordinary manner in w ch you exerted 
yourself on that occasion in his behalf, and expresses in 
warm terms his obligations to you. He is lately returned 
from N. York, in y e neighbourhood of which he passed y e 
summer, and is much recruited in his health and spirits, 
to which his re-appointment to office has very probably 
contributed. He saw Gen 1 Gage at N. York, who gave 
him his comission and a warrant for his back-pay. 
With this appointment everybody seems pleased, and I 
believe it will make him very happy. I hope you'll 

1772.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 301 

succeed in your endeavours to procure him the former 

Your letter accompanying the cheeses I sent with one 
of them to M r Pitts, and half of the other I sent to D r 
Chauncy. They thank you for them. I read to him y r 
letter, as I did also your other letters. The Dr. says he 
shall keep y e cheese for his best friends only, and shall let 
them know it is the produce of the Earl of Chatham's 
estate, & for that reason will deal it out to them very 
frugally, as he means to keep it as long as he can, as a 
memento of the man to whom y e nation is under infinite 
obligations. Tho' such a memento is very perishable, I 
was much pleased with y e warmth of y e Dr.'s expression & 
his zeal to do justice to so distinguished a character. If 
his L d ship had been continued the Palinurus of y e state the 
public happiness founded on the mutual confidence of 
prince and people would probably not have been inter- 
rupted, nor a foundation laid of y e seperation of y e Colonies 
from Britain, which unless the operations of nature be 
reversed, will infallibly be y e consequence of the ministerial 
system now executing in America, and particularly in this 
Province, and to which you can be no stranger. The new 
object of uneasiness is y e dependence of our Judges on 
ministry for their support, and y e making by an act of the 
last session of Parliament certain offences in America 
triable in England. Both of which, as well as many other 
of their acts shew a total disregard to and a manifest in- 
fraction on the rights of Americans in the most important 
instances in w ch the rights of the people of England are 
effectually secured to them. Such impositions and dis- 
iriminations will work their effect, and the effect will 
appear when the balance of power shall be reversed, or 

* Among the Temple Papers are numerous letters from Mr. Temple, showing the great 
interest which he took in the case of Major John Phillips, who was superseded in the com- 
mand of Castle William by Col. Dalrymple. Most of them are printed in the Proceedings, 
vol. xii. pp. 207-211. —Eds. 


the two scales shall approach nearer to an equilibrium, 
which every day hastens. It seems Lord Hillsborough as 
y e minister for America has made his exit. From Hudson's 
Bay to Florida there will be no great lamentation on 
that occasion, especially as his successor, Lord Dartmouth, 
has y e character of being the friend of America, in w ch 
character he can be no enemy to Great Britain. It gives 
us joy that Grenville has got well thro' y e small pox. Y r 
little girl is as plump as a partridge, & makes us all happy. 
M rs Bowdoin's & Jemmy's best regards to you & Betsy 
accompany those of, d r S r , 

Y r most obed. h ble serv*. 

James Bowdoin. 

I send you f Scott one of our island cheeses of last 
year's growth.* 



Province of Massachusetts Bay, June 29, 1773. 
To y e Right Hon ble y e Earl of Dartmouth. 

My Lord, — The re-establishment of the union & har- 
mony that formerly subsisted between Great Britain & 
her Colonies is earnestly to be wished by the friends of 
both. As y r Lordship is one of them, y e two Houses of y e 
Assembly of this Province beg leave to address you. The 
original causes of the interruption of that union & harmony 
may probably be found in y e letters sent from hence to 
administration and to other gentlemen of influence in 
Parliament, since the appointment of Sir Francis Bernard 
to y e government of this Province. And there is great 
reason to apprehend that he and his coadjutors originally 

* The island referred to is Naushon, the property and occasionally the summer resi- 
dence of Mr. Bowdoin. See 6 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. v., p. 366, note. — Eds. 
t Printed from a rough draught in the handwriting of James Bowdoin. — Eds. 


recommended & laid the plans for the establishing y e 
American revenue, out of which they expected large sti- 
pends & appointments for themselves, and which through 
their instrumentality has been y e occasion of all the evils 
that have since taken place. When we had humbly 
addressed his Majesty and petitioned both Houses of Par- 
liament, representing our grievances and praying for the 
repeal of the Revenue Acts, the like instruments, and 
probably y e same, exerted themselves to prevent those 
petitions being laid before his Majesty & the Parliament, 
or to frustrate the prayer of them. Of this we have just 
had some new and unexpected evidence from original 
letters of Governor Hutchinson & L* Governor Oliver, in 
which the former, particularly & expressly by his letter of 
y e 10 th Dec r , 1768, endeavoured in co-operation with Gov r 
Bernard to frustrate a petition of a number of the Council 
for y e repealing those acts and to procure his Majesty's 
censure on the petitioners ; and the letters of y e latter, by 
y e disadvantageous idea conveyd by them of the two 
Houses of Assembly, manifestly tended to create a preju- 
dice against any petitions coming from a body of such a 
character, and his letter of y e 11 th of May, 1768, in parti- 
cular, mentions y e petition of y e House of Representatives 
to his Majesty and their letters to divers noble Lords with 
such circumstances as had a tendency to defeat y e petition 
and render y e letters of no effect. It is now manifest, my 
Lord, what practices and arts have been used to mislead 
administration, both in y e first proposal of American 
Revenue Acts and in y e continuance of them. But when 
they had lost their force, and there appeared under the 
influence of y r Lordship a disposition in Parliament to 
repeal those acts, his Exc y Gov r Hutchinson, in his speech 
at y e opening of y e last session of y e Gen 1 Court, was pleased 
to throw out new matter for contention & debate, and to 
call on y e two Houses in such a pressing manner as 
amounted to little short of a challenge to answer him. 


Into such dilemma were they brought by y e speech that 
they were under a necessity of giving such answers to it 
as they did, or having their conduct construed into an 
acquiescence with the doctrines contained in it, which 
would have been an implicit acknowledgment that y e 
Province was in a state of subjection differing very little 
from slavery. The answers were y e effect of necessity, 
and this necessity occasiond great grief to y e two Houses. 
The people of this Province, my Lord, are true and faith- 
ful subjects of his Majesty, and think themselves happy in 
their connection with Great Britain. They would rejoice 
at y e restoration of y e harmony and good will that once 
subsisted between y e parent state and them ; but it is in 
vain to expect this happiness during y e continuance of 
their grievances, and while their charter rights one after 
another are wrested from them. Among these rights is 
the supporting of y e officers of y e Crown by grants from 
y e Assembly ; and in an especial manner y e supporting of 
the Judges in the same way, on whose judgment the 
Province is dependent in y e most important cases of life, 
liberties, & property. If warrants have not yet been, or 
if they already have been issued, we earnestly begy e favour 
of your Lordship's interposition to suppress or recall them. 
If y r Lordship should condescend to ask what are y e means 
of restoring y e harmony so much desired, we sh d answer 
in a word that we are humbly of opinion if things were 
brought to y e general state in w ch they stood at the con- 
clusion of y e late war, it would restore the happy harmony 
that at that time subsisted. Your Lordship's appointment 
to be principal Sec y of State for y e American Department 
has given the Colonies y e highest satisfaction. They think 
it a happy omen, and that it will be productive of Ameri- 
can tranquillity, consistent with their rights as British 
subjects. The two Houses humbly hope for your Lord- 
ship's influence to bring about so happy an event ; and in 
y e mean time they can with full confidence rely on your 

1773.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 305 

Lordship that y e machinations of Sir Francis Bernard and 
other known enemies of y e peace of G* Britain & her Colo- 
nies will not be suffered to prevent or delay it. 

This letter, w ch has been agreed on by both Houses, is 
in their name and by their order signed & transmitted to 
y r Lordship, by, 

My Lord, yr. Lordship's most obed fc & very hble. serv*. 

Indorsed by James Bowdoin : " The Council & House of Rep 8 Letter to 
Lord Dartmouth signed by Sec 1 "? Flucker, June 29, 1773. Tho s Hutchinson 
being Gov r ." 


$ Coffin from Nantucket. Boston, June 30, 1773. 

Sir, — Yesterday y e Gen 1 Court was prorogued to Sep- 
tember. The same day before y e prorogation y e two 
Houses agreed on a letter to Lord Dartm , & ordered it to 
be signed and transmitted in their name by y e Sec ry . It 
will be sent by this conveyance enclosed in a cover directed 
to you & D r Franklin, to be deliv d to his Lordship in such 
manner as you & y e D r shall think proper. 

The Com tee of Council appointed to correspond w fch you 
desired me to send you a copy of it (w ch is enclosed) as they 
could not meet before y e departure of y e vessel. They w d 
be glad to know how y e letter is rec d , & what notice has 
been taken of the proceedings of y e Gen 1 C fc in y e last winter 
session. I am respectfully, S r , 

Y r most obed* hble. serv* 

James Bowdoin. # 

* A duplicate of this letter, with the enclosures, was sent July 9. Mr. Bowdoin then 
added: "The Speaker of y e House of Rep s has sent to D r Franklin two authenticated copies 
of y e Gov r ' s & L* Gov r ' s letters, and has desired y e D r to let you have one of them." Copied 
on the same sheet of paper is an incomplete abstract of the letters referred to, in the hand- 
writing of Bowdoin, headed : " The subject or heads of divers letters from Boston to gentle- 
men in administration at London ; taken from the originals, which by the death of George 
Grenville, Esqr (late Secretary of State) & of Thomas Whateley, Esq r , Secretary to him, 
fell into hands of gentlemen who permitted them to be sent to Boston for the perusal of a 
few persons in New England. They were sent by Dr. [blank] to [blank], and rec d at Boston, 
March [blank], 1773." — Eds. 




[July, 1773?] 

Dear Sir, — I have frequently turned in my mind the 
subject matter of our conversation the morning we walked 
together in S fc James Park, & since I came into this coun- 
try I have mentioned it to my brother Darlington, whose 
peculiar prudence will not suffer him to say No to any thing 
I may think honorable for myself, but seemed surprised 
at my shewing an inclination to leave my own country. 
If to be made an instrument of restoring that antient 
good humour & harmony which subsisted betwixt the 
mother country & the Colonys, & at a time too when it 
is of the utmost import to this nation, did not appear to 
my mind most honorable, I would not glance an eye to 
such an employment, & leave my own country & friends & 
some whom I dearly love. For 'tis not want that induces 
me to covet such an employment. Riches neither is, nor 
ever was, the object of my wishes. And if Lord Dart- 
mouth thinks so favorably of me as to recommend me to 
his Majesty for the purpose of carrying abroad any heal- 
ing measures, I should only hope, if I executed my trust 
with fidelity, & health or any other circumstance shoud 
make me desirous of returning home, I might then be 
placed in as comfortable a situation as I was found in. 

You know my mind now. Was I with you I woud in 
confidence say something more of my brother's sentiments. 
But I must leave it entirely to you to name me again if 
you think proper to Lord Dartmouth. I shoud not choose 
to ask my brother to sollicite this employment. If I am 
thought a proper person by his Lordship, & the offer is 
made. I shall consider myself at liberty to accept of it. 
I have been told I lost Jamaica for not asking it. I know 

* Second son of the first E:irl of Darlington, and a lineal descendant from Sir Henry Vane, 
Governor of Massachusetts, 1636-7. He was born in 1732 and died in 1801. — Eds. 

1773.] FREDERICK VANE. 307 

not that. Such an employment never enterd into my 
mind till M r Fuller proposed it to me, & sayd he knew I 
shoud be agreeable to the gentlemen of the island. I de- 
clined asking it on account of my family connections in 
this country. The same reason holds for my not requesting 
it at this time. But as I pledged myself for the accept- 
ance of it, if they coud procure it for me, so if Lord Dart- 
mouth considers me as capable, & desirous of going with 
such instructions as we talked of, & thought most likely 
to answer the true ends of government at home & the 
wishes of the moderate & sober part of the inhabitants of 
New England, enthusiastic as it may sound, I have that 
love for Old England & its old constitution that to be of 
some service to my country, woud afford me a very sensi- 
ble pleasure. Of course I shall be glad to hear from you 
upon this subject, & sure I do not judge amiss in leaving 
this to your good sense & prudence. M rs Vane joins me 
in compliments to M rs Temple. I am 

Very sincerely your friend & humble serv* 

Fred. Vane. 

M r Pownal has, I hear, sayd the government are sollick- 
ing him to go over. I woud by no means set myself up 
in competition with him or any other gentleman more 
conversant & capable than I feel myself. I am only ready 
to answer when called upon. 


Selaby, Aug* 22 d , 1773. 

Dear Sir, — I took the liberty of writing to you a few 
lines some time ago upon the subject of our conversation in 
S fc James Park. I now read in the papers that M r Pownal 
is to go to New England ; I hope upon the conciliating 
plan & to bring back that country to its ancient good 


humour, I might say, good sense, for in that they seem 
no ways deficient. Having glanced an eye that way I am 
sollicitous to know what is realy doing, for I know little 
but what I see in the papers. At the same time I cannot 
expect as much of your opinion as perhaps you might have 
confidence in declaring; were we to converse together again 
upon that subject. Our government here seem to have 
much upon their hands, East Indies, Ireland, America, &, 
to crown the work, a new Par?. My mind is at present 
employ d about farming, & I shoud leave it for the busy 
world with some reluctance. M rs Yane is very well. I 
hope your wife & little one are the same. Excuse my 
troubling you with this, & allow me to say, I am 

Y r very sincere, humble seiV. 

Fred k Yane. 

S°hampton Street, Cov t Garden, Sept. 1 st , 1773. 

Gentlemen, — Since my last M r Pownall, who, you are 
sensible, is not only Secry to the Plantation Board, but 
likewise to Lord Dartmouth as Secry of State, took occas 11 
to observe to me these three things, whether by order of 
his superiours or not, I cannot say : 1 st , that all the Crown 
hxwyers were of opinion the Stat, of Hen. 8 th respecting 
the trial of foreign treasons extended to the Colonies ; 
2, that in consequence of a doubt which formerly arose at 
the Council Board respecting this extent, the Chief Jus- 
tice, who was a member of that Board, by the King's 
order, took the opin n of the other eleven Judges, who 
unanimously agreed with him in opin n that this Stat, did 
extend to the Colonies; 3, that the governm* were in 
poss n of this jurisdiction, several offenders having suffer' d 
under the exercise. of it. These observations containing 
some new as well as import* matter, I confess'd the au- 

1773.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 309 

thority was great, without giving up my opin n , and after 
reconsidering this arduous question as far as the time 
wou'd permit, I observed to him that no man or order of 
men can possibly judge of that which is not exposed to 
their judgm*, that the true political state of the Colon 8 was 
not known to the twelve Judges when they gave their opin- 
ion, which is irreconcileable with it, as I hope clearly to 
evince from matters of record as well as reason, as soon 
as time sufficient & avocations unavoidable will allow, 
and that I retain'd my former opinion, which seem'd, I 
thought, to surprise him. Afterwards I observed to Lord 
Dartmouth that cuting off the Colonies from the king- 
dom for one purpose had a tendency to cut them off for 
others, to which he seem'd to assent. It is needless to 
add that the opin 11 of the Judges & lawyers hath been 
confirm'd by both Houses of Parl fc & adopted by the King 
& his min rs , or to take notice of the time, learning & 
labours requisite to oppose these united authorities, which 
cannot be done in the most efficacious manner without 
taking & clearing the ground proper for the defence of 
your other rights, wherefore I have since applied myself 
to this difficult & important business with diligence. 

During the late session of Pari* I used my best endeav- 
ours to obtain a repeal of the grievous duty imposed on 
the teas you import, of which it may not be amiss to 
mention these particulars. An intelligent, worthy friend, 
who is largely concern'd in the tea trade, & well acquainted 
with it consider'd in all its relations, having in several 
conferences convinced me that this duty was prejudicial 
to the India C° & the kingdom, I pray'd the favour of 
him to draw up a state of the whole, to be laid before L d 
Dartm : he proceeded to do it without delay, and while 
employ'd upon it a gentleman who formerly sat in Par? 
came out of the city, & desired him to draw up a state of 
the tea trade, to be laid before L d North, to whom he 
answ d that he was then busied in making the state de- 


sired to be given to Lord Dartm , and wou'd give him a 
copy when completed ; this state, a copy whereof you 
have enclosed, I deliv d to his Lordship ; and, in order to 
encline his Maj ty & his min rs to favour the desired repeal, 
accompanied it with the following extract from the writ- 
ings of a great min r to the late French king : " Let your 
Maj ty call to mind what pass'd at the time the business of 
excess in drinking was before the [Council] board. I set 
myself against it with all my power, & if the thing had 
but depended upon me it had never been done. I knew 
really the injustice of it, altho' they [the farmers] had 
endeav d to give it all the colours one cou'd possibly imag- 
ine, and so it made such a noise in the consequence that 
your Maj ty tho fc it convenient to revoke that new tax." 
My hopes of success w r ere not inconsiderable for some 
time, but at length they fail'd, for which I know no rea- 
son, save that, according to my information, it was tho* fit 
to continue this tax as a badge of sovereinty over you. 

Some time past D r Franklin inform'd me one Califf was 
come over to secure to the grantees the twelve eastern 
townships & had applied to him for that purpose, and that 
he wou'd bring him to me, adding that he understood it 
was equal to the parties concern'd whether they were 
continued under the governm* of the Province or not ; 
whereupon I observed to him it was our duty to take care 
of the right & interest of the Province, to which he readily 
assented. Not long after, calling one morning at the Doc- 
tor's, there I saw M r Califf, and in the course of my en- 
quiry into the state of these townships, & who were the 
persons concern'd in the mangem* of this affair, among 
others, to my surprise, he named S r Fra s Bernard ; where- 
upon I directly said I wou'd have nothing to do with S r 
Francis, and after giving back his papers left him, with- 
out seeing him any more til some time after at L d Dartm ' 8 
levy, where he appear'd shy of me. Young M r Lane at- 
tended at the same time upon this business, as his Lordship 

1773.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 311 

afterwards told me. He had formerly applied, but now 
said nothing to me about it. In a conference had the 
same morning between his Lordship, M r Pownall & my- 
self, respecting the eastern part of the Province, I was 
very frankly told that D r Califf, so M r Pownall call'd him, 
wanted to obtain a distinct government there. To ex- 
plain this conference, you are sensible that in the late 
reign this eastern country was seized into the King's 
hands, other possessions being deein'd intrus 118 upon the 
rights of the Crown, and held until judg* was given by 
her late Maj ty , as guard 11 of the kingdom, in Council, in 
favour of the claimants in point of soil & jurisdict n pur- 
suant to the report of two late eminent Chancellors when 
Attor y & Solic r Gen 1 . This judg* it was presumed was se- 
cure to the Province and others for the future their 
respective rights. Nevertheless, by my letter to the Gen 1 
Court of the 10 th June, 1762, I gave them, you are sen- 
sible, a partic r acco* of the claim made on behalf of the 
Crown to the country lying between the rivers Penobscot 
& S fc Croix, with various matters respecting it & the right 
of the Prov ce . The measures I took caused, as I under- 
stood, a suspens 11 of the intended proceedings for reducing 
the claim of the Crown into possession. Other proceed- 
ings since had respecting this part of the Province you 
well understand ; wherefore coming to the pres fc occas 11 , the 
several applica 8 lately made respect g this part of the coun- 
try having raised fresh attention in administra 11 & revived 
their sense of the claim of the Crown, in order to quiet 
the same & bring this embar d import* business to the best 
settlem fc practicable for all parties, I coihunicated to L d 
Dartm° the proposal contain'd in my letter to the Council 
of the 18 th of Oct r , 1771, of which I made such an extract 
for his Lords p ' s use as was suffrV to give him a clear idea 
of it, and some consid ble time having elapsed before this 
conference, which took place on the last day of his Lords p ' s 
seeing comp y upon business before the usual recess, and he 


having comunicated the proposal to M r Pownall, who is 
well acquainted with all prior proceedings relative to the 
country in quest 11 , he began by saying that the proposal 
was the most equal & complete he ever saw, save its being 
liable to this great objec 11 that the opinion of the Attor. & 
Sol r Gen 1 , which influenced the judgem* given by the 
Queen in favour of the Prov ce , was founded upon such an 
error in point of fact as vitiated their opin n , the jus post- 
liminii whereon it was grounded being prevented from 
taking place with respect to the country lying betw 11 
Penobscot & S fc Croix in favour of the Prov ce when their 
present charter was granted, because the Fr. king, he 
said, was then certainly in poss 11 of that country by vertue 
of the cess 11 made by the treaty of Breda, so that the 
Prov ce hath no better right to it than they have to N. 
Scotia. To this I made such answ r as the remembr ce of 
my former examina 8 into the sev 1 changes of domin 11 to 
which the country hath been subjected & into the nat re of 
the right whereby the Crown lands in America are held, 
with my sense of the opera 118 of public law & right upon 
the whole matter, dictated. His Lords p appear'd to me 
rather satisf d with the answ r , and M r Pownall continuing 
the object 11 no farther, we proceeded to the consid 11 of the 
proposal, wherein his Lords p from first to last shew'd great 
candour, and among other things observed that by em- 
bracing it the Gen 1 Court wou'd have it in their power to 
do justice by their new & proper grants made at their 
discret" to the settlers of the twelve townships, who at 
pres fc have no legal title, and so in like manner the other 
unappropriated lands may be granted freely by the Gen 1 
Court, saving such proper mast lands as shou'd be set 
apart for the use of the Crown, for which purpose it was 
observed that proper surveyors shou'd be appointed bv 
the Crown & the Prov ce , and his Lords p seem'd pleased 
with the expecta" that the Gen 1 Court wou'd from time 
to time give their assistance for securing from inroads & 

1773.] WILLIAM BOLL AN. 313 

trespasses the lands thus set apart for national service. 
According to an account of the distance of each har- 
bour & river from Boston to Louisbourg, which I brought 
with me, in the year 1745, the extent of the seacoast from 
Penobscot to S* Croix amounts to 49 leagues ; and altho' 
in the course of this conference there was no express men- 
tion made of waving the claim of the Crown to this coun- 
try, yet his Lords p having authorised me to declare to the 
Gen 1 Court his approba 11 of my proposal for the settlem* of 
it, in case they shall think fit to embrace it, the subse- 
quent negotiation & conclus 11 of the matter will, I con- 
ceive, clearly amount to a waver of this claim & secure to 
the Province the future jurisdic n over the whole country, 
together with their right to such land as shall not belong 
to the Crown or partic r persons, with the entire avoidance 
of future contests respecting the right of jurisdic 11 & soil, 
the progress whereof, if they take place, will be attended 
with difficulty and the event with danger, so that if the 
pres* opportunity of quieting this interesting business sho d 
not be embraced, the Prov ce , all things consid d , may prob- 
ably in my opin n never meet with another so favourable. 

Upon his Lordsh p ' s entire agree* to the proposal he made 
mention of writing to the Gov r to signify the same, but 
presently after gave me author* 7 to declare his approba 11 
of it, to be laid before the Gen 1 Court ; and since writing 
the above, in the course of a conference with M r Pownall, 
the right to this part of the Province being rather casually 
mention'd, he observed that the opin n of the Attor y & Sol r 
Gen 1 whereon the judgm fc of the Queen was founded was 
condition 1 and proposed our going together directly to 
examine the proceedings remaining in the office, in order 
to clear up this point, but I avoided it, observing that Q. 
Eliza th held all the eastern country to the time of her 
death, that K. James had no maner of right to grant 
under the great seal of the kingdom of Scotl d any lands 
that he held in right of the Crown of Engl d , and that K. 


Cha 8 2 d had no right by the treaty of Breda to cede to the 
French king any lands held in right of his Crown, be- 
cause by public law & right all such lands are to descend 
with the Crown ; but, presently puting an end to all en- 
quiries of this nature, we both agreed that th' acceptance 
& completion of the present proposal wou'd entirely quiet 
the country for the coihon benefit of all parties concern' d. 
As to your civil rights & liberties, which in their nat re 
& value so far exceed all other possess 115 , my hopes of being 
able to say something agreeable to you are frustrated, 
after hav g discontiir 4 writing this letter some time for 
that purpose. When the letter of the two Houses to L d 
Dartm came to hand, his Lords p being gone to his seat 
in the country, 120 miles dist fc , with intent to remain 
there during the usual recess from business, we directly 
transmited it to his Lords p , who did not think fit to 
come to town & attend the Cabinet councils held in con- 
sequence of the advices rec d by the same conveyance ; 
since which having had free conversa 11 touch g the proper 
gov* of the Colon 8 with an intelligent gentleman, likely 
enough to know the sense of adminis 11 , he declared in the 
strongest terms the author ty of Parliam* to be unlimited & 
unquestionable. His utter exclus 11 of all examina 11 in this 
case surprised me ; however, I deliberately oppos'd this 
doctrine until he waved the quest 11 by proceeding to other 
matter, & I have not elsewhere met with any cert n mark 
of the approval of that temperam t which is so desirable 
on your behalf, but rather the reverse of late. For my 
own part I confess that, upon the most careful exercise of 
a free judgm*, it appears to me that nothing can be duly 
determ d without being duly consid d , & that nothing can 
be duly consid d without hearing the parties concern'd, — 
that unlimited author ty doth not appert 11 to any of the 
rulers upon earth, altho' absolute power oppresseth so 
many parts of it, — that the law of nat re being the law 
of God is immutable & every law of man repugn* to nat 1 

1773.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 315 

justice void, — that the late system of taxa 11 & jurisprud- 
ence is incompatible with your just rights, — that the 
true perman* interest of the king, kingd m , & Colon 8 is 
inseparable, & their cord 1 union, by injur 3 & improvid* 
meas res so grievously wounded of late, requisite for their 
mutual honour, safety, & welfare ; wherefore the great 
quest 11 now is what farther can be done to check the pre- 
vail sense of unlimited author ty , which seems to have 
gain'd strength upon the applicat ns lately made, as well 
as the other meas res taken to restrain it. In your late 
contest with the Gov r , who set up a supremacy, with 
invita 11 to the two Houses to attempt its overthrow, it is 
to be observed that in the nat re of the case the scales cou'd 
not be equally held, because concess 118 made by the Gen 1 
Assem ly wou'd be understood to bind the Prov ce , whereas 
his concess 118 made on your convincing him of any error 
wou'd rest in his pers 11 , & in no wise bind the Crown ; and 
as to the applica 118 made by the House of Repres ves to the 
King, having never yet seen them, nor had any knowl- 
edge at all of them til D r Franklin acquainted me with 
them & the proceed gs upon them, a few days after our 
joint transmiss 11 of the letter of the two Houses to L d 
Dartm°, a copy of whose letter to him, dated the 2 d of 
June, giv g acco* of his Lords p ' s present g two petit ns of the 
House to his Maj ty , with his roy 1 ans r to the same, the D r 
soon after sent me, all I can say is that this answ r hath 
very much encreased my concern for the public welfare. 
After frequently revolving the subj fc matter of this un- 
happy controversy in my own mind, & consider g it in all 
its parts, relations & future effects, as far as I was able, 
some time past I resolved to write & publish an authentic 
state of the establish* & civil rights of the Eng h Colon 8 
planted in America, intend 8 to place those rights on the 
most solid basis, and in so clear a light that no impart 1 
man can reject them ; or rather to shew that the acta 
regia of the several princes under whose auth ty their 


acquests of Amer n dorain 11 were made by the meritor 8 ad- 
venturers & settlers had originally so placed them. You 
are so well acquainted with the begining & progress 
of this controversy that 'tis needless to say it doth not 
subsist between the inhabit 8 of this kingdom & th' in- 
habit 8 of the Colonies, whose rights & inter* are really in 
substance the same, altho' their local separa 11 , with the 
conseq* din°er ce in several parts of th' exter r form of gov*, 
doth in certain cases occas 11 differ* modes of their enjoym*, 
but th' inhabit* 8 of this kingdom have not such a deep 
sense of their conect n with you in point of right & inter* 
as the welfare of the whole doth in my opin n require ; and 
therefore it would be benefic 1 to encrease if possible their 
sollicitude on your behalf. Error being infm te , altho' an 
incompetent min r began this controversy without the least 
cause or possible public benefit, var 8 augmenta 118 , the 
mischiefs & dangers attend* upon it are spread so far & 
wide, have taken so deep root, & your adversar 8 are so 
numer 8 , intellig* & powerful, that for a consider ble time I 
was much at a loss to discern the best method of making 
an efficaci 8 defence of your rights, & at length form'd a 
plan so large that I know not when I shall accomplish it, 
nor whether I shall be able to do it at all to my own 
satisfac 11 : however, after having nearly completed the 
proper prepar ry collect 118 sever 1 months past, I began its 
execu 11 , & have since given as close applica 11 to it as avoca 113 
unavoidable wou'd permit, and purpose to proceed upon 
the old maxim, nil desperandum, when the coiTion-wealth 
is in danger. 

M r Pownall lately asked me on a sudden who was 
agent for the Massa** 8 Province, because, he said, the par- 
tition-line between that & the Province of New York 
being adjusted & settled by their mutual agreement had 
been transmited in order to obtain the royal confirmation 
of it, but the appearance of the Massachu** 8 Province by 
their proper agent was wanted for that purpose ; to which 

1773.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 317 

I answered that I knew nothing of this business, but was 
agent for the Council and D r Franklin for the House of 
Repres ves , there being no agent chosen & appointed for the 
Province, whose inhabitants being by Charter incorporated, 
he said, must of necessity appear by their agent deputed 
under the corporation or public seal, as other corpora- 
tions always do, the seal being of course to be affixed to 
the appointment upon the agent's being chosen by the 
Gen 1 Court ; and from the whole that hath been said at 
different times, respecting the justice & necessity of the 
Province's having the benefit of the free choice of their 
agent in order to the defence of their rights & interests, 
I apprehend the choice which the two Houses shall make 
will not be frustrated, but on the contrary receive its 
proper completion. If that shou'd ever be unjustly re- 
fused the Province wou'd in my opinion have good cause 
of complaint, and then they must of necessity appear in 
the best manner they can : in the mean time my indispens- 
able duty to the Province obliges me to declare that it is 
impossible under the present state of the agency to con- 
duct its affairs in any authoritative, regular & beneficial 
manner. In case the Gen 1 Court shall approve of the 
proposal respecting the eastern country, it will be impos- 
sible to negotiate that affair on behalf of the Province 
otherwise than by their agent duly authorised, and I know 
not how soon there may be other occasions for the ap- 
pearance of an agent with admissable authority. I am, 
Gentlemen, with the greatest respect for you & the other 
members of the Council, 

Your most obedient and most humble servant. 


Gentlemen of the Comittee of Council appointed to correspond 
with their Agent. 



Selaby, near Darlington, Sept r 11 th , 1773. 

Dear Sir, — Ever since I received the pleasure of yours 
I have been very indifferent in my health. 'Tis not for 
man to complain. I only mention it as an excuse for 
not returning you my sincere thanks. It certainly ap- 
peared strange to me that Pownal shoud be thought of as 
a proper person to conciliate matters between the Colony 
of New England & this country. All the papers woud 
have it so. But when I was told that he himself shoud 
say government were sollicitous to have him undertake 
the arduous task, I always believe a gentleman will not 
dare to tell a falsehood, and that it was so. My sen- 
timents are well known to you, but I can have little 
expectation of L d Dartmouth's casting an eye upon me. 
Men in such situations expect solicitation. It is not that 
I feel any nonsensical pride which prevents me offering 
my services where they can be of any use, for to be sure 
Virginia is the most desirable on every account. But I 
have a delicacy with respect to my family, which I hinted 
to you before, & not easy to be expressed. Does Par? 
meet in Nov r or not ? Is it the East Indies or the West 
or both which will occasion the summons ? Are your 
Governors in America to come over or not ? If you can 
with propriety give me a sketch of your thoughts about 
it I shoud be glad to hear from you, & take no manner 
of notice to a soul about it. If you have the smallest 
objection, pray say not a word about them. I shall be 
glad to hear M rs Temple & my little favorite is well. 
M rs Vane is perfectly so. My confinement has not been 
agreeable to her ; however, I hope to be abroad in a few 
days, & do think of leaving this country sooner than I 
once intended, whether for Bath, & so see our friend 
Post, or for town I am not yet resolved upon. Wet 

1773.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 319 

weather just came in the midst of our harvest. But such 
a summer I never remember. I shoud have not been 
ashamed of shewing you our northern country. Trecothick 
is well, I hear, & his house by this day cover'd in. S r W m * 
writes to me in spirits, talks of the south ; the scheme for 
Lancaster was defeated for the present. Possibly our 
young man may stand fairer at the gen 1 election, which 
'tis now sayd will be in the spring. Early in life I was 
dipped in contest, which has made me detest the business ; 
therefore I shoud never encourage it. M rs Yane is gone 
out, or woud, I am sure, desire her compt 3 with mine to 
M rs Temple. I am, very sincerely, 

Y r friend & humble serv*. 

Fked k Yane. 


Covent Garden, Septemb r 29 th , 1773. 

Sir, — I take the liberty to inclose & commit to your 
care my letter to the Committee of Council appointed 
for correspondence, whose names have not been men- 
tioned to me. 

Upon considering the papers transmited, which con- 
tain the particulars of the last contest between the Gov- 
ernour & the two Houses, it appear'd to me that the 
Council had assumed the true & proper principle of defence, 
and in their conduct observed the wise maxim of proceed- 
ing /br^ter in re et suaviter in modo, in consequence whereof 
your modesty was approved by administration, altho' the 
grounds of your opposing unlimited authority were not ; 
and the reasoning of the House of Repres ves being more 
displeasing, an inclination to measures which might in 
their progress nearly affect your Charter seem'd at first 
to arise on a sudden, but accompanied rather with con- 
cern than asperity, and in a little time the thoughts of 

* Sir William Meredith, Bart., Vane's brother-in-law. — Eds. 


laying the affair before Parliam k then siting were waved, 
and instead of proceeding to th' imediate use of any im- 
portant measures, their suspension in order to further 
consideration appear'd to take place, with great reserve 
since. Unlimited authority is the great fort which they 
appear determined to defend ; and as that comprises a 
power to take money out of your pockets at the discretion 
of others, to be applied to purposes you do not approve, 
however mild the intention of the present ministers may 
be in their use of this power, you are sensible it is ca- 
pable of such exercise in future as will subject you to pay 
dear for your own shackles ; wherefore the existence of 
this boundless authority is the great question. 

In this question all the King's American subjects & 
their posterity being imediately concern'd, and conse- 
quentially all the British subjects with their posterity, too 
great care & wisdom, patience & perseverance with pro- 
priety cannot be exercised, especially considering with 
whom you have to contend, whose example in point of re- 
serve & preparation is, in my poor opinion, worthy of your 
imitation. Here, you are sensible, your grievances origi- 
nated, and here, if possible, their removal is to be obtain'd. 
Many good things have been written on your side of the 
water respecting your rights, injuries & dangers, tending 
to excite the due sense of a comon cause ; but the proper 
united defence of the Colonies here against their adver- 
saries, so far as I know of the matter, hath never been at- 
tempted during this illustrious controversy. Juncta juvant, 
and when vested with ample authority I have gone in to 
the Lords of the Treasury at the head of seven or eight 
agents of so many colonies, but now they seem a rope of 
sand. As to your own conduct in this material part of 
your defence I had much rather you shou'd take a 
review of it than I shou'd state it, or the observations 
of your best friends upon it, yet cannot forbear saying it 
is impossible for me to approve of it, with respect to the 


Province or myself, and that in my poor opinion you 
undervalue either the best defence of your rights here or 
the learning & labours requisite to oppose the opinions 
& resolutions of all the Crown lawyers, the twelve Judges, 
the King's ministers, the two Houses of Parliament, & 
his Majesty, and to prevent if possible the establishment 
of unlimited authority, which, according to my plain sense 
of it would render the future possession of all your rights 
precarious ; but this strange contest is now brought to 
such a pass that I desire entirely to wave every considera- 
tion that doth not relate to the best preparation & actual 
defence of your important interests ; and for my own part 
am determined, whether well or ill paid, or not paid at 
all, to exert my utmost abilities to secure your rights & 
liberties as worthy members of a free state. 

Prudence being, you are sensible, an essential part of 
sound policy, I pray that publication may not take place 
touching any thing you may think fit to comit to my care, 
as it tends to prejudice proper application or to assist your 
adversaries in their preparations against you, or both. 

Be pleased to pardon my troubling you with what pre- 
cedes, which I thought more proper for a private letter, 
& your subsequent comunication, than for insertion in my 
letter to the Hon ble the Comittee, as I did not know the 
passages to which that was liable. I am, with great 
respect, Sir, 

Your most obedient, humble servant. 


The Hon ble James Bowdoin, Esq*. 


To his Excellency the Governor and the Honorable his Maj- 
esty's Council. 

The petition of Richard Clarke and Sons, of Benjamin 

Faneuil, and Thomas and Elisha Hutchinson. 



That the Hon ble East India Company in London have 
shipt a considerable quantity of tea for the port of Bos- 
ton, and, as your petitioners are made to understand, will 
be consigned to their address for sale. 

That some of your petitioners have in consequence of 
this been cruely insulted in their persons and property. 
That they have had insulting and incendiary letters left 
and thrown into their houses in the night. That they 
have been repeatedly attacked by a large body of men. 
That one of the houses of your petitioners was as- 
saulted in the night by a tumultuous and riotous assem- 
bly of people, and violent attempts made to force the 
house for the space of two hours, that have greatly dam- 
aged the same. 

That they are threatned in their persons and property, 
and further with the destruction of the said tea on its 
arrival into port. And that the resolves and proceedings 
of the town at their meetings on the 5 & 18 instant are 
intended to be expressive of the general sense of the 
town, to which we beg leave to refer your Excellency 
and the Hon ble Board. 

Your petitioners therefore beg leave to resign them- 
selves and the property committed to their care to your 
Excellency and Honors as the guardians and protectors of 
the people, humbly praying that measures may be directed 
to for the landing and securing the tea until your peti- 
tioners can be at liberty openly and safely to dispose 
of the same, or until they can receive directions from 

their constituents. 

Richard Clarke & Sons. 

Benj a Faneuil, jun. 
Tho s & Elisha Hutchinson. 
A true copy. 




In Council, Nov r 27, 1773. The petition of Kichard 
Clarke, Esq r , & others (to whom the East India Company 
have consigned a quantity of their tea) being referred to 
this day, the same was taken up, and after long debates 
M r Danforth, M r Bowdoin, M r Dexter, and M r Winthrop 
were appointed a Com tee thereon, who reported, and the 
report, after debate, was refer' d for further consideration 
to Monday next, ten o'clock, A. M. 

Monday, November 29 th , 1773. The said report was 
again considered, and after some amendments unani- 
mously agreed to. It is as follows : 

Previous to the consideration of the petition before the 
Board, they would make a few observations occasioned by 
the subject of it. The situation of things between Great 
Britain and the Colonies has been for some years past 
very unhappy. Parliament on the one hand has been 
taxing the Colonies. And they on the other have been 
petitioning and remonstrating against it, apprehending 
they have constitutionally an exclusive right of taxing 
themselves, and that without such a right their condition 
would be but little better than slavery. Possessed of 
these sentiments every new measure of Parliament tend- 
ing to establish and confirm a tax on them renews and 
increases their distress ; and it is particularly increased by 
the act lately made, empowering the East India Company 
to ship their tea to America. This act in a commercial 
view they think introductive of monopolies, and tending 
to bring on them the extensive evils thence arising. But 
their great objection to it is from its being manifestly 
intended (tho that intention is not expressed therein) 
more effectually to secure the payment of the duty on tea, 
laid by an act passed in the 7 th year of his present Majesty 
intitled " an Act for granting certain duties in the British 




Colonies and Plantations in America," which act in its 
operation deprives the Colonists of the right abovemen- 
tioned (the exclusive right of taxing themselves) which 
they hold to be so essential an one that it cannot be taken 
away or given up without their being degraded or de- 
grading themselves below the character of men. It not 
only deprives them of that right, but enacts that the 
monies arising from the duties granted by it may be ap- 
plied " as his Majesty or his successors shall think proper 
or necessary for defreying the charges of the administra- 
tion of justice and the support of the civil government 
within all or any of the said Colonies or Plantations." 

This clause of the act has already operated in some of 
the Colonies, and in this Colony in particular, with regard 
to the support of civil government, and thereby has 
operated in diminution of its charter rights to the great 
grief of the good people of it, who have been and still 
are greatly alarmed by repeated reports that it is to have 
a further operation with respect to the defreying the 
charge of the administration of justice, which would not 
only be a further diminution of those rights, but tend in 
all constitutional questions, and in many other cases of 
importance, to bias the Judges against the subject. They 
humbly rely on the justice and goodness of his Majesty 
for the restitution and preservation of those rights. 

This short state of facts the Board thought necessary to 
be given, to shew the cause of the present great uneasiness, 
which is not confined to this neighbourhood, but is general 
and extensive. The people think their exclusive right of 
taxing themselves by their representatives infringed and 
violated by the act abovementioned ; that the new act 
empowering the East India Company to import their tea 
into America confirms that violation, and is a new effort 
not only more effectually to secure the payment of the 
tea duty, but lay a foundation for the enhancing it; and 
in a like way, if this should succeed, to lay other taxes 


on America ; that it is in its attendents and consequences 
ruinous to the liberties and properties of themselves and 
their posterity ; that as their numerous petitions for 
relief have been rejected the said new act demonstrates 
an indisposition in Ministry that Parliament should grant 
them relief ; that this is the source of their distress, a 
distress that borders on despair ; and that they know not 
where to apply for relief. 

These being the sentiments of the people it is become 
the indispensible duty of the Board to mention them, that 
the occasion of the late demands on M r Clark and others 
(the agents for the East India Company) and of the con- 
sequent disturbances might appear ; and we mention them 
not to justify those disturbances, the authors of which we 
have advised should be prosecuted, but to give a just idea 
of the rise of them. 

On this occasion justice impells us to declare that the 
people of this town and Province, tho they have a high 
sense of liberty derived from the manners, the example, 
and the constitution of the mother country, have till y e 
late Parliamentary taxations of the Colonies been as free 
from disturbances as any people whatever. 

This representation the Board thought necessary to be 
made prior to their taking notice of the petition of the 
agents above mentioned ; to the consideration of which 
they now proceed. 

The petitioners "beg leave to resign themselves and 
the property committed to their care to his Excellency 
and the Board as guardians and protectors of the people, 
praying that measures may be directed to, for the landing 
and securing the tea, &c a ." With regard to the personal 
protection of the petitioners, the Board have not been 
informed that they have applied for it to any of the Jus- 

Itices of the Peace, within whose department it is to take 
cognizance of the case of the petitioners, and of all other 


the authority necessary for the protection of his Majesty's 
subjects. In the principal instance of abuse of which 
they complain the Board have already advised that the 
authors should be prosecuted according to law ; and they 
do advise the same in the other instances mentioned in 
their petition. 

With regard to the tea committed to the care of the 
petitioners, the Board have no authority to take either 
that or any other merchandize out of their care, and 
should they do it, or give any order or advice concerning 
it, and a loss insue they apprehend they should make them- 
selves responsible for it. With respect to the prayer of 
the petition " that measures may be directed to, for the 
landing and securing the tea," the Board would observe 
on it that the duty on the tea becomes payable, and must 
be paid, or secured to be paid, on its being landed. And 
should they direct or advise to any measure for landing it, 
they would of course advise to a measure for procuring 
the payment of the duty, and therefore be advising to a 
measure inconsistent with the declared sentiment of both 
Houses in the last winter session of the General Court, 
which they apprehend to be altogether inexpedient and 

The Board, however, on this occasion assure your 
Excellency that as they have seen with regret some late 
disturbances, and have advised to the prosecuting the 
authors of them, so they will in all legal methods en- 
deavour to the utmost of their power to prevent them in 

Whereupon advised that his Excellency renew his orders 
to his Majesty's Justices of the Peace, Sherrifrs, and other 
peace officers to exert themselves to the utmost for the 
security of his Majesty's subjects, the preservation of 
peace and good order, and for preventing all offences 
against the laws. 

1773.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 327 


P. Scott. 

Boston, Dec r 13, 1773. 

Sir, — Your letter on Gov r Wentworth's affair and the 
pamphlet on y e same subject have been through your 
brother coihunicated to him. 

Lord Dartmouth's letter of w ch you gave y e substance 
was sent to y e Speaker of our Assembly. We are not 
able to understand upon what ground his Lordship builds 
his hopes that y e causes of discontent in America will be 
removed, and that y e old harmony will be soon restored ; 
especially as y e act empowering y e East India Company 
to ship their teas to America (made but a little while 
before y e date of that letter) very clearly demonstrates a 
resolution, not meerly to continue but increase the causes 
of that discontent. It confirms, tho it does not mention, 
the act imposing the duty on tea, and should y e tea sent 
by the India Comp y be rec d will most extensively operate 
to increase the revenue complained of, and consequently 
operate in y e most effectual manner to defeat the hopes of 
his Lordship, — hopes which American pensioners and all 
other dependents here on an American revenue have been 
and are doing their utmost to frustrate. Hence, however 
glossed they may be, the representations that undoubtedly 
have been, and are now manufacturing at Castle W m , of 
the late proceedings of people here relative to the Tea 
Commissioners ; and hence y e joy that appears among 
a few for this new subject of representation. The s d 
Com rs with the Com™ of the Customs have thought proper 
to retire to the Castle. These last, who, I am informed, 
have not held a Board in Boston since y e 1 st instant, seem 
to intend to act a third time the same farce they acted 
in June, 1768, and imediately after the massacre in 
March, 1770. They had then no reason at all for retir- 


ing, and, if it be possible, less now. But the object of all 
these manoevres is the same. They have such a predi- 
lection for troops, and appear so unfriendly to the peace 
and tranquility of this Province, that, judging by their 
former conduct, it seems as if nothing but the ruin or 
inslaving of it will satisfy them. Should troops be sent 
hither, which some few wish and expect, the general 
apprehension, already too well grounded, will increase to 
a moral certainty, that the people of America are destined 
to vassallage and servitude ; but as they have found all 
their petitions disregarded, and no relief to be hoped in 
that way, their only reliance must be on that Providence 
w ch superintends and governs in the societies of men. 

The newspapers will inform you what uneasiness the 
mulish obstinacy of the Tea Comissioners has occasioned. 
They, like y e father of two of them, (who has y e credit of 
dictating all their measures, and holds frequent consulta- 
tions at y e Castle) doubtless expect to be well pensioned 
for being persecuted for righteousness sake. If they do 
not, their conduct is unaccountable, for when they saw a 
determination in y e people that the tea sh d not be landed, 
and that it was impossible for them to execute their 
coihission, they might have made a virtue of necessity, 
and declared they would have nothing to do with y e tea 
any further than to send it back to the India Company. 
This they were desired to do, and so far it was their 
duty to interpose to prevent a greater loss to the Com- 
pany, who in that case must have approved their conduct, 
clearly grounded on the Company's interest, and at y e 
same time they could be no object of the people's resent- 
ment. But their conduct has been the reverse, which has 
brot on them y e public odium in a greater degree than 
they probably expected, from which they have taken 
occasion to remove to the Castle, where they will have 
leisure and inclination to improve it to their best advan- 
tage. This conduct of theirs will scarcely be justified by 

1773.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 329 

the India Company, especially as they and their advisers 
at the Castle are doing all in their power to prevent the 
tea being sent back, which prevention it is greatly to be 
feared will be the means of the destruction of it. But 
although the Tea Com rs may not be able to justify their 
conduct, it has been asked, how y e people can justify 
theirs ? A full answer to this question involves in it all 
that has been said in favour of the rights of the Ameri- 
cans, among which rights it has been clearly proved that 
no tax on them can be legal or constitutional without 
their own consent. Hence they deduce an exemption 
from the duty on tea, which notwithstanding the refine- 
ments and distinctions that have been made, and whether 
paid in America or Britain, so long as the trade in that 
article is confined to Britain, is clearly a tax on them, 
which conceded to is enhanceable at pleasure, and may be 
extended to every other article of commerce. A greater 
power of taxing the Colonists so as to answer y e purpose 
of revenue cannot be easily conceived than the compelling 
them to take from Britain all the articles they want, and 
these at y e British merchants' price, and at the same time 
laying a duty on those articles, — a duty that has no 
limitation but the will of y e imposer and the inability of 
the imposee. Is it not an abuse of language to call the 
exercise of such a power government, and the subjection 
to it liberty ? Such a power the Colonists have felt, and 
they have repeatedly petitioned and remonstrated against 
it without effect. The rejection of their petitions had made 
them think they are doomed to servitude, especially since 
the passing of the late act of Parliament authorizing the 
East India Company to send their tea to America, w ch has 
eradicated their hopes of seeing Lord Dartmouth's en- 
deavours for the common good take effect ; and which act 
they look on as equivalent to an explicit declaration that 
their petitions shall not be regarded. In such a situation 
they had a choice but of two things ; to receive the tea 


and infallibly be slaves ; or reject it and stand a chance for 
freedom. They choose the latter. What the value of the 
chance is depends in part on the generosity, or rather the 
justice, of Great Britain, and can be best calculated by 
the political mathematicians on your side of the water. 
But whatever it is, and whatever may be the event, they 
deserve to be free, and will have this consolation that 
they are not slaves with their own consent. 

I herewith send you the proceedings of Council on 
the petition of the Tea Comissioners. The Gov r , for 
what reason and by what right I do not know, has for- 
bidden any copy of them to be delivered from the Sec ry ' 8 
office for publication here ; but I suppose you will think 
yrself at liberty to act your pleasure with y e copy en- 
closed. I hope my dear Betsy and her little boy are well 
and as chearful and gay as ever. 

I am, respectfully yrs. 

[Dec r 17. Scott's detention by weather gives me an 
opportunity to inform you of the fate of y e tea. Ever 
since y e arrival of y e first parcel of it about 3 weeks ago 
in Capt. Hall, the people of y e town and country round, 
being determined it should not be landed, have been 
endeavouring to induce the consignees to send it back, 
but to no purpose. And after y e Custom House had 
refused to grant any papers concerning it w ch y e necessity 
of y e case w d justify, and y* y e Gov r had refused a Castle- 
pass, and every means of its exportation prevented (to 
effect w ch exportation was y e end of y e many meetings 
of the people during that time), it was last evening 
destroyed ; being about 350 chests on board three ships. 
The remainder on board Loring was a few days ago, with 
y e vessel, cast ashore on the back of Cape Cod in a 
storm.] [not scnt.~\ 

1773.] THOMAS FLUCKER. 331 


Boston, Dec r 20 th , 1773. 

Gentlemen, — Your written request of this day for a 
copy of the Tea Consignees' petition and the proceedings of 
Council thereon, it would have given me great pleasure 
to comply with, as I am ever ready to do every thing that 
can be expected from me as a publick officer. But I must 
beg you to recollect that his Excellency the Governor 
declared in Council he could not consistent with his duty 
to the King consent to the publication thereof, — it being 
contrary to all practice & in the nature of the thing 
improper for the advice given by his Majesty's Council to 
his Governor to be made publick without his consent. 

While I am under this injunction you will accept it as a 
sufficient reason for my not sending the papers you have 
requested, and believe that I am with the utmost respect, 

Your most obedient humble servant. 

Tho s Flucker. 

The Hon blb John Erving, W m Brattle, Jas Bowdoin, & Ja s Pitts, 


Boston, December 20 th , 1773. 

Sir, — Your letters of the 1 st and 29 th of September are 
before us. We observe by the former that in a conversa- 
tion with M r Pownall, Secretary to the Plantation Board 
and to Lord Dartmouth, he introduced a subject which 
we hoped would not have been again moved, viz., the 

* Thomas Flucker sat in the Council of Massachusetts from 1761 to 1769, succeeded 
Oliver as Secretary of the Province, was subsequently a Mandamus Councillor and a 
Loyalist refugee, dying in London in 1783. His first wife was a sister of James Bowdoin. 
For some further account of him, see Sabine's American Loyalists, vol. i. pp. 428, 429. 
— Eds. 


extension to the Colonies of the Statute of Henry 8 th , 
respecting the trial of foreign treasons. You say you 
cannot tell whether this was done by order of his superiors, 
but it seems not improbable that it was ; they knowing 
the exceptionable nature and operation of the act lately 
made, empowering the East India Company to ship their 
teas to America, and expecting it would be vigorously 
opposed in the execution of it, were again for holding 
up in terror em the aforesaid statute respecting treasons, 
and the opinion of the twelve Judges that it extended to 
the Colonies. Although the reasons contained in your 
petition to the House of Commons in 1769 against such 
extension were not then attended to, it might have been 
expected when passion and resentment grounded on misin- 
formation had subsided they would have had some effect ; 
and we hope they have had, notwithstanding what was 
mentioned by M r Pownall on that subject. If it was 
mentioned by that gentleman from the expectation of 
opposition to the act aforesaid, he will not be disap- 
pointed, for there appears a very general opposition to it 
in all the Colonies from which any intelligences have been 
received concerning it. 

The spirit of opposition was propagated hither from the 
Southern Colonies, who 'tis said are determined the tea 
shall not be landed ; but unfortunately the tea shiped for 
this Colony arriving the first, the effects of the opposition 
have here first taken place. The newspapers enclosed 
will inform you of the proceedings of the people here 
relative to the Tea Consignees since the arrival of the 
tea, and what has passed between them. The people in- 
sisted that the tea should be sent back, and finding they 
could not influence the consignees to do it, who retired to 
the Castle, they obliged the owner of the tea-freight that 
first arrived to apply to the Custom House for a clearance 
or such papers as the necessity and unprecedency of the 
case would nave justified, and also to the Governor for a 


Castle pass ; but they were both refused. On this refusal 
being reported to the people, who in a very large body 
from town and country were assembled in and round the 
Old South meeting house, the assembly was dissolved. 
The same evening, viz., of the 16 th instant, the tea on 
board three ships, consisting in the whole of about three 
hundred and fifty chests, was destroyed. 

It is an act of justice due to the people to mention what 
they say in justification of themselves. They say their 
rights and liberties were at stake, that Parliament has no 
constitutional authority to tax them ; that since the first 
Parliamentary taxation they have by their representatives 
repeatedly petitioned and remonstrated against it ; that 
their petitions are disregarded ; that the act made at the 
last session of Parliament empowering the East India 
Company to ship their teas to America demonstrates that 
the Ministry do and intend to persevere in their taxa- 
tion system ; that their submission to the said act would 
be the establishing and perpetuating that system, and 
rivetting eternal shackles on themselves and their pos- 
terity ; that they did all in their power to rid them- 
selves of those shackles with the least detriment to the 
India Company ; that for this purpose they urged and 
repeatedly urged the consignees to send back the tea, but 
to no effect ; that when the consignees denied their 
assistance, they endeavoured by the owner of one of the 
tea ships to procure from the Custom House and from the 
Governour the necessary papers for exporting it ; that 
these being refused, and every block thrown in the way 
of sending it back, the end of their meeting, viz., the 
preservation of the tea could not be effected ; that these 
proceedings of theirs were no assumption of government, 
but flowed from the great law of nature, self-preservation ; 
and that, notwithstanding any representations to the con- 
trary, they are faithful and loyal subjects of his Majesty, 
of which in the late wars they have given the highest evi- 


dence by co-operating with his Majesty's British subjects 
in distressing and subduing his and the nation's enemies, 
and this, not by compulsion, not by taxation-acts of Parlia- 
ment, but freely and so much beyond the proportion and 
ability of this Province, that Parliament by repeated grants 
refunded a part of the expence. How far this vindication 
of themselves will by administration be deemed a vindi- 
cation, we do not know. But we beg the favour you 
will make such use of it for that purpose as you think 
proper, and that you will exert your abilities to prevent 
any harsh measures being taken against the town or 
Province in consequence of the proceedings of the people 
and the destruction of the tea. We herewith send you a 
copy of the petition from the consignees of the tea to the 
Governor and Council, with the doings of the Council 
thereon. The day after the tea was destroyed, the Gov- 
ernor summoned a Council ; but the weather and illness 
prevented a quorum meeting. The same reasons prevented 
a meeting the following day. It is a misfortune that only 
three of the members live in town which makes it difficult 
to convene a Council. To make a quorum certain the 
Governor has called a Council at Cambridge to-morrow, 
the proceedings of which you will be informed of by 
this ship, if her departure, which is expected, does not 

When the General Court meets your letters will be 
laid before the Council. The Court stands prorogued 
to the 12 th of January, but whether they will then meet is 
uncertain. We are, with much esteem, in behalf of the 
Council, who at the last session of the General Court 
appointed us a Committee to correspond with you, S r , 
Your most obed* hum ble serv ts . 

John Eryixg. 

W M Brattle. 

Ja s Bowdoin. 

Ja s Pitts. 

1774.] WILLIAM BOLL AN. 335 

The petition & proceedings above mentioned cannot be 

sent at present. 

Boston, Dec r 24, 1773. 

S R , — The foregoing in the original went T Scott. The 
petition and proceedings mentioned therein are now sent 
authenticated. A Council was held at Cambridge the 
21 st for advice relative to the destruction of the tea. The 
result is enclosed, as also is the vote of Council appointing 
the Committee to correspond with you. 

The Governor with advice of Council has prorogued the 
General Court to the 26 of January, then to meet for 
business. We are respectfully, 

S r , yrs. 


Covent Garden, Feb 1 "? 2 d , 1774. 

Gentlemen, — Upon receiving & considering the pro- 
ceedings of the Council relative to M r Hutchins # & M r 
Oliver's letters, transmited by M r Royal with his letter 
of June 26 th , pursuant to the direction of the Board, the 
better to guard against the difficulties that heretofore at- 
tended the Province papers of great importance, I lodged 
them in the Plantation Office, to be transmited by a 
King's messenger to L d Dartmouth in the country at con- 
siderable distance, or to be laid before his Lordship in 
such manner as the dep ty secretary shou'd think fit. His 
Lordsh p ' s stay in the country exceeded my expectation, & 
the Parliam* not meeting til the 13 th ult mo the considera 11 of 
such business as wou'd admit of delay seem'd to be post- 
poned. When the whole or part of the King's ministers 
took into consideration the complaint of the Council & 

* A mistake of Mr. Bollan's amanuensis for "Hutchinson." The reference is to the 
letters to Whately sent over by Dr. Franklin, and printed by order of the House of Repre- 
sentatives. — Eds. 


House of Repres ves against the letter-writers I am unable 
to say ; but on Saturday the 8 th of last month, when at 
dinner, to my surprise, I received a letter from M r Cottrell, 
Clerk of the Council, therein saying he was directed to 
acquaint me that the Lords of the Comittee of Coun- 
cil had appointed to meet in the Council chamber on the 
next Tuesday, when it was probable their Lordsh ps wou'd 
take into consideration the address of the House of 
Repres ves complaining of the conduct of the Governour & 
Lieu* Gov r , & that he was to desire I wou'd be pleased to 
attend the Comittee at that time. Some hours after, D r 
Franklin came & told me that in the besining; of the ev'n- 
ing he received a letter requiring his attendance at the 
time appointed. Juncta juvant, & this sudden & precipi- 
tate proceeding to consider the complaint of the House of 
Repres ves singly was far from being agreeable. On Mon- 
day the D r received notice that the Gov r & Lieu* Gov r 
wou'd be heard by counsel, who, I doubted not, wo d come 
ready to defend their clients with preparations made at 
leizure ; and it was evidently impossible for the D r to be 
in like manner prepared, wherefore this proceeding needs 
no coment. However we concerted as proper a plan of 
conduct as our strait'ned condition wou'd permit. My 
chief purpose was to get time whence great benefit might 
accrue various ways ; and the adverse parties coming pre- 
pared to be heard by counsel served to promote this design. 
When Tuesday came we were call'd in, & advancing stopt 
when we came to the upper part of the room, whereupon 
the D r was directed to the place where the parties & their 
counsel usually stand. Before the proceeding upon busi- 
ness, I stept up to the head of the table & observed to 
their Lordships that I had lodged in the Plantation Office, 
for proper consideration, authentic copies of the proceed- 
ings of the Council of the Province, containing their ob- 
serva 119 & resolves upon the letters in question, & in order 
to their defence against the unjust charges made upon 

1774.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 337 

them, & the better understanding of the matter, humbly 
proposed the whole might be consider'd together ; to which 
the Lord Presid* answ d that they were proceeding under 
the King's order of reference & so rejected my motion. 

D r Franklin is at present more at leizure than myself, 
and he will by this conveyance transmit a detail of the 
subsequent proceedings ; wherefore I shall only observe, 
that M r Mauduit, the agent for the Gov r & Lieu' Gov r , 
attending with their counsel M r Wedderburn, the Solic r 
Gen 1 , on the D rs producing copies of the letters, altho' he 
had not, in my opinion, the least colour of right to exam- 
amine the D r in any manner to the prejudice of himself or 
his constituents, he made repeated attempts for this pur- 
pose ; and when the copies, after enquiry made into their 
authenticity, were by consent admited to be given in evi- 
dence, he reserved this supposed right. Various alterca- 
tions taking place touching the parties being heard by 
counsel, which, standing by the D r , I advised, with his 
geting time sufficient for their preparation, intending in 
the mean time to take my own measures in your behalf. 
M r Mauduit, according to his instructions, insisting on the 
benefit of counsel, this made it easy for the D r to obtain 
the same, and the 29 th of last month was appointed for 
the hearing. 

On the next day I waited on L d Dartmouth to obtain the 
King's reference of the Council's proceedings to the same 
Comittee, & observed to his Lordship that they were going 
on to try the Province cause by halves. He seem'd well 
enclined to promote my motion, & on that day sev' night 
he told me that he had transmited the copies of the 
Council's proceedings to the Council office, so that I might 
take my measures accordingly ; in consequence whereof 
on the 26 th I lodged my petition to the King in Council 
there, where none of the principal clerks then attending 
I urged the chief of those whom I found to lay my peti- 
tion before the Lord Presid fc as soon as might be. 



On the 29 th upon enquiring of M r Cottrell whether my 
petition, with the Council's proceedings, had been refer'd 
by his Maj y to the Lords of the Coihittee, he answ d there 
had been no Council since lodgeing ray petition. After- 
wards attending the hearing before the Lords of the 
Com tee I had the grievous mortification to hear M r Wed- 
derburn, wandring from the proper question before their 
Lordships, pour forth such a torrent of virulent abuse on 
D r Franklin as never before took place within the compass 
of my knowledge of judicial proceedings, his reproaches 
appearing to me incompatible with the principles of law, 
truth, justice, propriety, & humanity. In other respects 
I was at a loss to determine whether he was more lavish 
of his praises of your worthy Govern 1 " or his censure of 
persons within his government. 

Inclosed you have a copy of my petition ; and being 
determ d , if permited, to support in person the conduct of 
the Council, with the other matters therein contain'd, to 
the utmost of my power, I am now labouring to make the 
best preparation for this purpose. I have been told by 
several persons, whose intelligence did not seem to have 
sufficient grounds, that I shou'd not be heard ; but speak- 
ing suddenly of my proposed reference to an intelligent 
person in office, he answ d that it was not the intent of a 
minister whom he named that the Council's proceedings 
shou'd be refer'd, adding that they had not pray'd for the 
removal of the Governour & Lieu* Govern 1- ; nevertheless 
at the hearing it was observed by a learned member of 
the Board, w T ho is not remarkable for his favour towards 
the Colonies, that the conclusion of the two complaints 
varied only in the different modes of expression, the con- 
clusion of the Council's having been stated to shew the 
unity of desire. Whether the conductors of the whole 
affair from the begining intended to exclude the Council's 
proceedings from all open hearing & defence I am unable 
to say, but cannot prevail upon myself to believe that 

1774.] WILLIAM BOLL AN. 339 

after what has been said in my petition touching the right 
of defence it will now be refused. However I shall insist 
upon it to the utmost, if any occasion shall so require. 

I am, with the greatest respect for you, gentlemen, & 
all the other members of the Council, 

Your most obedient & most humble servant. 


The Hon ble John Erving, W m Brattle, Ja s Bowdoin, & Ja s Pitts, 

Esq bs . 


Covent Garden, Feb 1- ? 19 th , 1774. 

Sir, — The report of the Lords of the Comittee upon 
the address of the House of Representatives, with the 
royal approbation of it, sent by D r Franklin, will shew 
you the temper of the present times, of whose violence, 
injuries, & improvidence I can foresee no end, altho' their 
chief conductors are thro' fear of consequences, I believe, 
unwilling to come to iihediate extremities ; but you are 
sensible that when passion & power unite in support of 
errors & wrongs their future operations are often unknown 
even to their authors ; for my own part I continue my 
endeavours to check this torrent of folly & madness, going 
on day & night with my intended vindication of the rights 
of the Colonies as fast as these troublesome avocations & 
the various difficulties of the work will permit. Altho' 
the right of petition evidently includes the right of sup- 
porting it, the chief ministers seem unwilling to grant or 
refuse a hearing in maintenance of my own. 

I am, with great esteem & regard, Sir, 

Your most obedient humble servant. 


The Hon ble Ja s Bowdoin, Esq*. 



Co vent Garden, Feb r y 24 th , 1774. 

Gentlemen, — Yesterday attending L d Dartmouth I 
began to complain of your Governour's preventing the 
Council's having copies of their own proceedings relative 
to the tea bus'ness, to be sent to their agent, but after a 
few things were said hereupon, suddenly falling into a 
general conference respecting the interesting state of 
American affairs, I took the liberty of censuring freely the 
late system of their administration as grievous & danger- 
ous to the kingdom as well as the Colonies ; and after 
complaining of their being so long unheard & of the gross 
abuse sustain' d by an agent at the first hearing ; with 
design to support my own petition I told his Lordship I 
had form'd an axiom which appear'd to me as evident as 
any in Euclide, differing only in this, that mine affects 
the heart as well as the head, viz*, that no question re- 
specting the right of others can be duely determined 
without being duely consider'd, and that it cannot be 
duely consider'd without hearing the parties concern'd ; 
to which he seem'd readily to assent, and in the course of 
what pass'd, wherein I observed that the right of petition 
to the King was founded in comon law & confirm'd by 
the law of the revolution, & included the right of support- 
ing it, expecting my kopes that I shou'd not be put to any 
new difficulties upon this occasion, he was explicit in his 
supposal that I shou'd be heard, and upon his enquiry 
when I had seen the L d President, I acquainted him with 
my attendances & how that matter at present stood ; 
having indeed chosen to let it rest on my part, unless 
call'd upon, until such time as I had seen Lord Dartmouth, 
who, I took for granted, would acquaint him with my 
expectation. This conference after being continued a 
considerable time, was broken off by the dep ty secretary's 
coming in upon urgent business. 

1774-] WILLIAM BOLL AN. 341 

I am, with the greatest respect for yon, Gentlemen, & 
all other members of the Council, 

Your most obedient and most humble servant. 


The Hon ble John Erving, W m Brattle, Ja s Bowdoin, & Ja s Pitts, Esq rs . 


Covent Garden, Feb 1 * 24 th , 1774. 

Sir, — Upon my geting up yesterday to come away 
when the sudden conclusion of the conference with L d 
Dartmouth took place, he likewise arose, and steping 
forward told me he was persuaded we both agreed at the 
bottom in our sentiments respecting American affairs. 
How this might turn out upon explication of particulars 
I know not. His natural disposition appears to be mild, 
just, & equal, but rather passive than active & spirited 
for maintaining his own opinion in Council, where, I very 
much fear, his influence is far less than his good intentions 
or the merits of your cause require ; and having not been 
long conversant in public affairs, I think he is somewhat 
liable to receive impressions unawares from the crafty 
designs of others, wherein your Governour seems to have 
notable talents. I observed to him some time past that 
every government immoderately exercised was tyranny, 
to which he freely assented. 

Having this instant received a strange kind of written 
message from L d Gower's porter relative to my waiting on 
his Lordship, I must of necessity now conclude, in order 
to write to him & to complete my dispatches by the present 
ship, which I am told is now sailing. 

I am, with the greatest regard, Sir, your most obedient 
humble servant. 



P. S. Having upon receiving the message from L d 
Gower's servant written a letter to his Lordship, of which 
you have a copy underneath, in return he sent his compli- 
ments, & inform'd me that upon my sending to-morrow 
any time before twelve I shou'd have an answer. After 
concluding my letter to the Comittee yesterday, my letter 
to you was then barely begun ; and when going on with 
it to-day, I received the message, which occasions the 
difference of dates. 

Feb'? 25 th . 
The Hon ble Ja s Bowdoin, Esq b 


Cov T Garden, Feb r y 25 th , 1774. 

My Lord, — The subject's right of petition to the King, 
founded in comon law and confirm'd by the law of the 
revolution, in my humble opinion, including the right of 
being heard to support it by proper proofs & reasons, I 
pray your Lordship will be pleased to consider at your 
leizure the propriety of my being heard in maintenance of 
my own, and that you will favour me with the honour of 
waiting upon you to receive your Lordship's commands, 
when most agreeable. 

I have the honour, &c. 


The R t Hon ble Earl Gower. 


The Com tee appointed on the Governor's message to the 
Board of y e 3 d instant, and the papers relative to the 
Chief Justice, coiiiunicated to y e Board by the House of 
Representatives, having duely considered them, are of 
opinion that y e following message be sent to his Excellency 


on the subject of the said message and papers, which is 
humbly submitted. In the name of the Committee. 

James Bowdoin. 

March 5, 1774. 

In Council, March 7 th , 1774. Ordered that James 
Bowdoin, Sam 1 Dexter, James Humphry, Artemas Ward, 
& John Winthrop, Esq rs , be a committee to wait on his 
Excellency the Governor with the following address. 

Tho s Flucker, Sec y . 

May it please your Excellency, — Your message of 
the 3 d instant to this Board relative to the Chief Justice 
of the Superior Court, and your several messages to the 
House of Representatives relative also to him (which with 
other papers the House by message have laid before the 
Board for their consideration) are on a subject of great 
importance. They contain declarations from your Excel- 
lency which we think do not comport with the spirit of 
the Charter, and tend to take away or lessen the jurisdic- 
tion of the Governor and Council, considered as a judi- 
ciary body or Court of Justice, and therefore it is incum- 
bent on this Board in faithfulness to the Province, and in 
justice to themselves, to take notice of some of them. 

Among those papers we find a copy of the remonstrance 
of the House addressed to your Excellency and the Coun- 
cil, and your Excellency's answer to it. # By the former 
they pray for the removal of the Chief Justice from his 
office, and by the latter you declare that in duty to the 
King you are obliged to decline their request ; and you 
are pleased repeatedly to decline it on their repeated 

But before your Excellency had proceeded thus far, was 
it not proper, as the remonstrance is addressed to the 
Council in conjunction with your Excellency, that it 

* Both of these documents are printed in The Boston Evening-Post, Feb. 21, 1774. — Eds. 


should have been communicated to them for their con- 
sideration of it ? Is not your undertaking to determine 
solely on a matter that falls under the cognizance of the 
Governor and Council jointly, and is so addressed to them 
by y e House, an unkind and disrespectful treatment of the 
representative body of the Province, and an infringement 
on the rights of the Council ? or rather, does it not anni- 
hilate the Council, considered either in their capacity of 
being advising and assisting to the Governor, or as a 
Court of Justice with or without the Governor ? and being 
done under a profession of duty to the King, does it not 
tend to alienate the affections of his Majesty's subjects 
from him ? Though such be the tendency, such an effect 
will not flow from it. If it had been communicated to 
the Board, they assure your Excellency they would not 
have done any thing concerning it inconsistent with their 
duty to the King, notwithstanding any indirect or con- 
structive intimation to the contrary. 

Your Excellency's apprehension that your taking any 
steps in this business would be counteracting his Majesty, 
and inconsistent with your duty to him, is founded on the 
facts mentioned in this clause in your first message to y e 
House, viz., " his Majesty having been pleased to direct 
warrants to be prepared for the payment of salaries to the 
Chief Justice and to the other Justices of the Superior 
Court, I received as Governor of the Province the earliest 
notice of this declaration of his Majesty's pleasure in 
order, as I conceive, that as far as might appertain to me 
I should conform thereto." This notice (that warrants 
were directed to be prepared), which appears to be in- 
tended only as an article of intelligence, your Excellency 
by this and your other messages on the same subject 
construes as an instruction obliging you not to do any 
thing to prevent the effect of those warrants or incon- 
sistent with the intention of them. But what room is 
there for such a construction, or to suppose you were 


under such an obligation, when the Justices themselves 
(at least four of them), whom this affair immediately 
respected, thought themselves not obliged to take his 
Majesty's grant, but at liberty to refuse it, and accord- 
ingly have refused it from July, 1772 (when their stipends 
were to commence) to the present time, and very lately in 
the fullest & most explicit manner. As in their refusal, 
which was a more effectual counteracting the intention of 
those warrants than any thing your Excellency could do, 
those gentlemen did not think they acted inconsistently 
with their duty to his Majesty, why should your Excel- 
lency think your laying before the Council the remon- 
strance of the House inconsistent with your duty to him? 
especially when your duty to the Province, with which 
your duty to the King cannot militate, required it. 

But supposing the notice of those warrants implied an 
instruction, or had been accompanied with an instruction, 
that you should do nothing directly or indirectly incon- 
sistent with the intention of them, why should it operate 
to prevent your Excellency's even hearing the remon- 
strance, and not operate to prevent your consenting to and 
signing the grants made by the Assembly, not only to 
those four Justices, but also to the Chief Justice, for 
their services during the same time for which those 
warrants were intended to pay them, and for which by 
virtue of one of those warrants the Chief Justice has in 
fact been paid ? Does not this give room for the appre- 
hension that your Excellency was not influenced solely by 
a sense of duty to the King in refusing to lay before the 
Board the remonstrance of the House ? 

The reasons why it was not laid before them seem to 
be given in that paragraph of your message to the House 
wherein you are pleased to tell them " that the Council, 
except when they are considered in their legislative capa- 
city, or as a Court for the Probate of Wills and granting 
Administration, and for determining Causes of Marriage, 


and Divorce, are by the constitution to be advising and 
assisting to the Governor, and do not make one Court or 
judiciary body with the Governor, but the Governor is 
considered as an integral part, and has authority from 
time to time at his discretion to assemble and call the 
Council together." We shall presently consider whether 
there be not other cases than those here mentioned by 
your Excellency in which the Council make one Court or 
judiciary body with the Governor, and in which the 
Governor is not to be considered as an integral part, but 
first beg leave to make a few observations on another 
part of the foregoing paragraph. 

We agree with your Excellency that the Council by 
the constitution are to be advising and assisting to the 
Governor. The Governor also w 7 ith them, or seven of 
them at the least, shall and may from time to time hold 
and keep a Council for the ordering and directing the 
affairs of the Province. But we humbly ask what advan- 
tages would be derived to the Province from this part of 
the constitution if the Governor, even in the most im- 
portant cases, should refuse to hold a Council, wherein 
he might be advised and assisted, and wherein also the 
Governor with the Council jointly, according to the na- 
ture of the case, might take the needful measures for the 
ordering (that is, the well ordering) and directing the 
affairs of the Province ? These clauses of the Charter 
were doubtless intended for some beneficial purpose. 
They were intended more effectually to secure to the 
Province a permanent good government, not subject to 
the will and caprice of a Governor, who left to act wholly 
independent of a Council might bring upon the Province 
the greatest mischiefs. Happy it was for the Province 
that the late Governor, Sir Francis Bernard, was not thus 
independent ! But the benefits intended by the appoint- 
ment of a Council would be defeated, if the Governor 
should not call them together when affairs of the greatest 


importance to the Province demanded it ; and indeed this 
would frustrate the end of their appointment in every 
capacity in which they cannot act without him. To 
apply this to the subject of the remonstrance, and to all 
cases in which complaint is made to the Governor and 
Council against officers of their appointment : It appears 
to us that when complaint is thus made, and the Governor 
refuses or neglects to lay it before the Council, he thereby 
counteracts the spirit and intention of the Charter, which 
the honor and faith of the Crown are pledged to maintain, 
and gives just reason for uneasiness. 

We shall pass over the intermediate messages, and 
come to the last message your Excellency sent to the 
House of Representatives ; on which it is necessary to 
make some observations. 

We find by it the House had informed you that they 
had resolved to impeach Peter Oliver, Esq r , Chief Justice 
of the Superior Court, before the Governor and Council, of 
high crimes and misdemeanors ; that they had prepared 
articles of impeachment, and prayed your Excellency 
would be in the chair, that they might have an opportu- 
nity of laying them before the Governor and Council. 

But your Excellency, after making divers observations 
concerning the manner of trial for crimes & misdemeanors, 
declined granting their request by declaring that " whilst 
such process as the House have attempted to commence 
shall appear to you to be unconstitutional, you cannot 
shew any countenance to it." It is with great reluctance 
the Board have entered into the consideration of a sub- 
ject on which they are obliged to dissent from your Ex- 
cellency. But a vindication of their right of jurisdiction 
as a Court makes it necessary. The complaint and pro- 
cess abovementioned are against an executive officer 
appointed by the Governor and Council. Complaints of 
this sort are no novelty. Many instances of them have 
taken place since your Excellency was first a member of 


the General Court ; and some of them while you were 
Speaker of the House of Representatives, preferred by 
the House. The Governor & Council have always been 
esteemed the proper judicature before whom officers ap- 
pointed by them have been triable for crimes or misde- 
meanors, so far as that, when found guilty, judgment has 
been given against them, with respect to their continuance 
in office ; and thus far your Excellency yourself has sup- 
ported the jurisdiction of that Court, which, when your 
Excellency presided, gave judgment in a recent case for 
the removal of an executive officer appointed by the Gov- 
ernor and Council. If such cases, in order to such a judg- 
ment, are not cognizable by that Court, there is no other 
Court in the Province by which they are cognizable for 
the purpose of removal from office. Divers such judg- 
ments have been obtained in consequence of the complaint 
of private persons. If private persons have a right to 
complain of maladministration of officers, the representa- 
tive body, who are the grand inquest for the Province, 
must a fortiori have that right. But your Excellency inti- 
mates that the process the House of Representatives have 
now attempted to commence is unconstitutional. The 
process they first attempted with regard to the Chief Jus- 
tice was by remonstrance addressed to the Governor and 
Council, which your Excellency, without communicating 
it to the Council, thought proper to suppress. The pro- 
cess next attempted was by impeachment, which you 
think unconstitutional. If it be unconstitutional, it can- 
not be cognizable by the Court, the jurisdiction of which 
being affected by the denial of the constitutionality of im- 
peachments, it becomes needful to examine the reasons 
of that denial. They are given in your Excellency's mes- 
sage, in which you are pleased to say, " that there are no 
species of crimes committed within this Province which 
are not cognizable by some established judicatory, and 
that the Governor & Council have no concurrent jurisdic- 


tion with any judicatory in criminal cases, nor any au- 
thority to try and determine any species of high crimes 
and misdemeanors whatsoever," [except at least for the 
purpose of removal from office, as your Excellency might 
have added.] " That if you should assume a jurisdiction, 
and with the Council try offenders against the law with- 
out authority granted by the Charter, or by a law of the 
Province in pursuance of the Charter, you should make 
yourself liable to answer for it, and his Majesty's subjects 
would have just cause to complain of being deprived of a 
trial by jury, the general claim of Englishmen, except in 
those cases where the law may have made special pro- 
vision to the contrary." 

All this may be true, and yet we humbly apprehend it 
will not support the conclusion that a process by impeach- 
ment is unconstitutional. 

The records and papers, containing the transactions of 
the General Court, having divers times greatly suffered 
by fire, it is very difficult to apply to them for precedents ; 
nor is it necessary, for if they abounded with them, the 
first precedent would be, or ought to be, grounded on the 
reason and nature of the case, which still remains for a 
guide. But if precedents should be necessary, the most 
respectable authority (the British Parliament), as your 
Excellency well knows, furnishes a multitude of them. 
The Commons may exhibit an accusation to the Lords in 
Parliament by petition, complaint, or impeachment. The 
House of Representatives are in this Province what the 
House of Commons are in Britain. The constitutional 
rights of the latter (among which is indisputably the right 
of impeachment) belong to the former. Between the 
House of Lords and the Council of this Province there is 
not so near a resemblance ; but with respect to legislation, 
and so far as the Council with or without the Governor 
are a judiciary body, there is a resemblance. It is now 
settled by a late determination of his Majesty that the 


Governor and Council are a judiciary body, with regard 
to the probate of wills and granting administration, and 
for determining causes of marriage and divorce ; and it is 
humbly apprehended they also are with regard to the re- 
moval of all officers from offices to which appointments 
are made by the Governor & Council. The impeachment 
made by the House of Representatives concludes with 
praying that " such proceedings, examinations, trials, and 
judgments may be had & ordered on the premises as may 
be agreable to law and justice." This prayer is con- 
sistent with the jurisdiction of the Court, who have law- 
ful power to remove from office, or confirm in it, as may 
be agreable to law and justice, and therefore may go 
into such proceedings, examinations, and trials, and form 
such judgments in and upon the premises as are incidental 
and necessarily preparatory to a final decision. We hum- 
bly apprehend therefore your Excellency's reasoning does 
not extend to the present case ; for even though the im- 
peachment had been for such high crimes and misde- 
meanors as are made felony, it would not induce or 
involve in it an obligation on the Court to give an extra- 
judicial sentence. An executive officer appointed by the 
Governor and Council may be guilty of crimes, for which 
by law he is punishable in a variety of ways by the com- 
mon law courts : if he be impeached for those crimes be- 
fore the Governor and Council, it is for the purpose of 
his removal from office, which the other courts have no 
power to decree. As those courts cannot invade the juris- 
diction of the Governor and Council, so the Governor 
and Council, in any other than their legislative capac- 
ity, it is presumed, will never attempt to interfere in the 
jurisdiction of the other courts. It might be supposed 
the Governor & Council could (and if they act at all, 
they must) trust themselves in the exercise of their 
jurisdictive powers ; tho your Excellency in reference 
to that exercise seems unwilling to trust yourself in the 


case of the present impeachment, notwithstanding you 
consider yourself as having a right of negative on the 
judgment of the Council. With regard to the Governor's 
right of negative on the Council, it operates in all acts of 
government, pursuant to the Charter, " in exclusion of 
judicial acts," in which it can have no operation, " it 
being utterly unsuitable to the nature of a Court of Jus- 
tice to consist of two branches, each possessing a negative 
on the other," whereby in many cases, if such was the 
constitution of the Court, it could not give a judgment, 
which is incompatible with every idea of a Court of Jus- 
tice. On these reasons the late determination of his 
Majesty in Council with regard to the Supreme Court of 
Probate, &c, was grounded ; and they extend with equal 
force to the Governor and Council, considered as a Court 
for hearing all complaints, remonstrances, and impeach- 
ments relative to the executive officers of the government, 
and giving judgment thereon, either for or against the 
defendant, by acquitting him or removing him from his 

But it may be objected that the same power which ap- 
pointed should remove. On which it may be observed 
that the appointment is to a trust for the public good, 
and vests a property (the lawful emoluments of the office) 
in the trustee. The mode of appointment is particularly 
directed by the Charter. It is by the Governor, with the 
advice and consent of the Council, neither of whom act 
in this matter in a judicial character. But the mode 
of removal, the Charter being silent about it, must 
depend on the reason and nature of the thing. These 
require that the removing power should be considered, 
and in fact be, a Court of Justice. Property, both 
public and private, being depending and to be settled 
by that power, determine the nature of it to be speci- 
fically judicial, or that it must be a Court of Justice, 
which excludes the idea of one of its members, where 


there is a plurality, being an integral part. There is 
therefore an essential difference between the appoint- 
ing & removing power, tho consisting of the same per- 
sons, when they act in those different characters. To 
apply this to the Governor and Council, — in the first 
character they have a reciprocal controul of each other, 
agreable to the Charter. In the latter character, there 
is no such controul, but they together do constitute a 
Court of Justice, with powers to form and regulate them- 
selves incidental to all courts, where law has not made 
provision for that purpose. There is nothing in the 
Charter inconsistent with this reasoning, but on the con- 
trary this reasoning is grounded on the Charter. The 
clause of the Charter that relates to the subject under 
consideration runs thus, " The Governor with the Assist- 
ants or Councellors, or seven of them at the least, shall 
and may from time to time hold and keep a Council for 
the ordering and directing the affairs of our said Prov- 
ince." The Governor and Councellors are here blended, 
and together constitute a Council, which in all cases 
proper for their cognizance are jointly (and not as two 
branches having a negative on each other) authorized and 
appointed for the ordering and directing the affairs of the 
Province, except in certain cases (particularly mentioned 
in other parts of the Charter) wherein seven or more 
Councellors are to be advising and assisting to the Gov- 
ernor. The end of this appointment, viz., the ordering 
and directing the affairs of the Province, includes among 
other things the removal of bad officers from office, and 
consequently includes a jurisdiction to hear, try, and de- 
termine on all complaints, remonstrances, and impeach- 
ments for that purpose, which perfectly coincides with 
the idea of a Court of Judicature, and therefore, according 
to the spirit and intention of the Charter, the Governor 
and Council must have that jurisdiction, without which 
their power for the well ordering & directing the affairs 

1774.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 353 

of the Province would be essentially deficient. Upon the 
whole, we are humbly of opinion, that although " there 
are no species of crimes committed within this Province 
which are not cognizable by some established judicatory," 
although " the Governor and Council have no concurrent 
jurisdiction with any judicatory in criminal cases, nor any 
authority to try and determine any species of crimes " 
[except at least for the purpose of removal from office], 
it does not thence follow that " the process by impeach- 
ment," or the Governor and Council's proceeding and de- 
termining upon it, " is unconstitutional," nor that their 
so doing " will be an assuming of a new or unwarrant- 
able jurisdiction, and make your Excellency liable to an- 
swer for it " ; nor that " his Majesty's subjects would have 
just cause to complain of being deprived of a trial by 
Jury." And we are further of opinion that a denial of 
the right of complaining or remonstrating against, and 
impeaching for, mal-administration of office, and a refusal 
to hear and determine on such complaint, remonstrance, 
or impeachment, are unconstitutional, will have an un- 
happy tendency to encourage the executive officers of the 
government to deviations from their duty, and are incom- 
patible with the safety and happiness of the people. 

Wherefore this Board declare their readiness to hear 
and determine on the impeachment above mentioned, or 
to hear & determine on the charge & complaint since ex- 
hibited by y e House of Kepresentatives on y e same subject, 
and desire that your Excellency with the Council would 
appoint a time for that purpose. 


Covent Garden, March 11 th , 1774. 

Gentlemen, — Late in the ev'ning of Saturday the 
5 th inst*, I received information that on Monday a message 



from the Kino; wou'd be sent to the two Houses of Par- 
liament respecting the late proceedings in North America, 
and at Boston in particular, accompanied with papers 
of correspondence ; and L d North accordingly on that day 
presented the following message to the House of Comons, 
" His Maj ty upon information of the unwarrantable prac- 
tices which have been lately concerted & carried on in 
N. America, and particularly of the violent & outrageous 
proceedings at the town & port of Boston, in the Province 
of Massa tts Bay, with a view of obstructing the comerce 
of this kingdom, and upon grounds & pretenses imedi- 
ately subversive of the constitution thereof, has thought 
fit to lay the whole matter before his two Houses of 
Parliam*, fully confiding as well in their zeal for the 
maintenance of his Maj' 8 authority as in their attach- 
ment to the coinon interest & welfare of all his domin- 
ions, that they will not only enable his Maj ty effectually 
to take such measures as may be most likely to put 
an iinediate stop to the present disorders, but will also 
take into their most serious consideration what further 
regulations and permanent provisions may be necessary to 
be establish' d for better securing the execution of the laws 
& the just dependance of the Colonies upon the Crown & 
Parliam* of Great Britain." In consequence of my infor- 
mation, after doubting some time on Sunday what was the 
best step now to be taken, & being sensible that min rs , after 
taking as much time to prepare their own measures as 
they think fit, sometimes so far hurry on execution as to 
distress their opponents ; for this & other reasons, to 
check in some measure if I cou'd the torrent in this case, 
I resolved to prepare & publish with all possible dis- 
patch my late petit" to the King, with illustrations, and 
thereupon went into the city to the printer who during 
some time past had been employ'd in my intended vin- 
dication of the rights of the Colonies, a laborious work 
requiring great care, after collecting numerous proper 

1774.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 355 

materials ; told him he must lay that aside for the present 
& prepare for printing a short pamphlet with all speed, 
promising to make proper allowance to the men who 
shou'd work out of coinon hours, directing him to send 
the next morning for part of the copy ; when going about 
it & attending to it without intermission, the copy was 
completed on Tuesday before dinner ; and by my clerk's 
attendance, & my going to the printers in person several 
times, & afterw ds going late farther into the city to two 
of the principal publishers, in consequence of M r Almon's 
telling me at the printer's I was too late for the next 
day's publication, I prevail'd on them to publish it on 
Wednesday morning, & now send herewith inclosed 
2 copies of it. On Tuesday ev'ning, having before heard 
of nothing but hostile intentions, I was inform'd that 
American affairs wou'd come on in the House of Comons 
to-day, wherefore on Wednesday I resolved to prepare, as 
far as the uncertain state of the affair wou'd then permit, 
for petitioning that House ; my chief intent being to 
ascertain the rights of the Colonies, a point the least 
objectionable, tho' in its nature efficacious, and for that 
purpose gain admitance at least to lay before the House 
authentic copies from the records of many letters pat fc 
roy 1 pass'd for acquiring & settling new domin 11 in 
America, never yet laid before them, thereby proving 
that the several princes, numerous nobles, & other worthy 
persons who were concern' d in the settlenr* of the 
planta 118 , as well as the actual settlers, were very far from 
understanding that they who by their merits shou'd 
enlarge the public domin 11 shou'd thereby lessen their own 
liberties ; and after preparing a few general articles that 
might possibly serve on the occasion, in order to have my 
petition presented when ready & proper in point of time, 
I waited yesterday morning on Gen 1 Conway who had in 
the House denied authority of Parliam* to tax America. 
On proposing the presenta 11 to him, he answ d , it wou'd be 


more proper for him to support the petit n , expressing 
clearly his readiness to do it ; at the same time complain- 
ing that violence & disorders in the Colonies laid difficul- 
ties in the way of their friends obtaining the relief they 
wanted. Waiting upon S r Geo. Saville, he declined the 
presentation because he was in hon r obliged various ways 
to apply himself closely to another business, He told me 
L d North had put such an insidious question to him 
respecting the measures proper for the House to take, 
that after giving him a suitable answer, he directly went 
out of the House, out of resentm*, as I understood. 
From him I went directly to the Mansion House, where 
the Lord May r very readily & kindly promised to pre- 
sent my petit n . From him, pursuant to his recomenda 11 , 
I went to M r Ald n Oliver, whom I found very intelligent 
& candid, & who satisfied me that my petit n might be 
presented at a more dist* day than I had supposed, when 
a certain object of opposition wou'd have arisen. He told 
me the W fc India merch ts had agreed to meet on Thursday 
next in order to oppose any injurious measures, agreeing 
with me that this was one comon cause of all the Colon 8 . 
I had the pleasure of being inform' d by the L d Mayor 
that the spirit of resentm* in their House was abated, 
and he seem'd to think in no small degree, several of the 
members to whom he had spoke having changed their 

I had, since being refused to be heard before the Lords 
of the Comittee, made as great progress in my examina- 
tion & observations on the most material parts of the 
Governour's letter, with intent to complete and publish 
them with my petition, as the time and avocations would 
permit, when the late proceedings in Parliament began, 
which obliged me to change my measures, and publish 
the petition as you will find it, which. I understand, has 
not been unserviceable, and the affair of the letters, you 
are sensible must give way to others more important 

1774.] JOHN TEMPLE. 357 

during their continuance. It is no easy matter to prepare 
a petition in efficacious terms for the Province service, 
& agreeable to the differing sentiments of those who are 
to support it, and moreover least liable to objection from 
your adversaries ; wherefore to this & the other difficulties 
attending this important business I must now go on with 
my preparation. 

I am, gentlemen, with the greatest respect for you 
& the other members of the Council, 

Your most obedient & most humble servant, 


The Hon ble John Erving, W m Brattle, Ja 3 Bowdoin, & Ja Pitts, 
Esq* 8 . 


Great George Street, London, 15 March, 1774. 

My dear Jemmy, — It was with real pleasure that your 
sister and I received a letter from you to-day, but we are 
concerned that you had so great a cold when you wrote 
it. You will before this reaches you have heard of a se- 
ries of misfortunes that have befell me, and the last al- 
most too great for the fortitude I possess to bear up 
under. About a fortnight ago, without any previous 
notice, or any cause assigned, I was (by his Majesty's 
command, as I understand) dismissed from the employ- 
ment of Surveyor General, and with all the interest I can 
make, I cannot gain information what my fault or re- 
puted fault is. Lord North wrote me in his own hand, 
in answer to my letter, that Ministry did not think them- 
selves obliged to assign any reason for dismissing an 
officer who held his place during pleasure. You may 
well think this stroke has thunderstruck me. I have 
given up my house, and shall imediately dispose of the 
furniture ; after that we go down to pass some time with 


M r Lance,* & shall then retire to some cheap place in the 
country, till it may please God that this heavy cloud be 
passed over. 

D r Franklin was dismissed about a fortnight before me, 
but that was expected, as he confessed in private that he 
obtained & sent the famous letters to Boston. Every 
body else, as well as myself, are at a loss to conjecture 
what I am dismissed for, unless it be that I am tho't a 
friend to the American claims ; and as they are now 
about to assert their authority in America, dismissing all 
of that country, or who think favorably of their cause, 
they suppose, may discourage the Americans, and be a 
means of bringing them sooner under subjection. I have 
been advised to lay still & say not a word, and perhaps 
by & by his Majesty may be convinced that whoever it 
be that has instill' d poison into his ear to my prejudice 
has done it through mallace. I apprehend it has come 
from Hutchinson & them at Boston, & conveyed to the 
King through Hillsborough or some secret enemy here, 
but this is only conjecture. 

Lord North yesterday moved for leave to bring in a 
bill for the ruin of Boston, that is, to remove the seat of 
government from that town, to remove all the Custom 
House & other officers, & render it a place of no naviga- 
tion. No vessel to be suffered to go in or out. Salem, it 
is supposed, will be the capital of the Province. Casco 
Bay has been talk'd of, but that's not probable. Poor old 
Boston. How the people there will submit to this is un- 
certain ; perhaps their courage may not fail them, tho' 
most people think it will, & that they will cry peccavi. 

You will, I suppose, be disappointed of seeing M r George 
Apthorp ; as M r Trecothick had a touch of the palsey, M r 
Apthorp was sent for, and is daily expected in London. 
Betsey & I wish to see you, and if I get an allowance 

* Mary Temple, John Temple's eldest sister, married, in 1741, William Lance, Esq., 
who had a country residence in Kent. — Eds. 

1774.] JOHN TEMPLE. 359 

granted me from the treasury wh [torn] soliciting for, 
we have thoughts of going as fa [torn] to meet you, when 
we hear you are drawing this way. Do in your next 
inform us what your rout will be, & when you purpose 
coming to Lond . Next Monday American affairs will 
be consider' d by both Lords & Commons, & severe it is 
though [t] the measures will be. Lord North's motion 
which I have already mentioned was carried without a 
divission. It doth not seem as if they intended to touch 
any other Province at present but Boston, although Phila- 
delphia & others have sent back the tea ships, tho' they 
did not destroy the tea. In fact the times are gloomy ; 
and in my opinion that country & this will never more 
harmonize ; they may worry & crush the Americans for 
a time, but they will see themselves at last amicable 
measures would have held them much longer beneficial to 
this country than power can possibly do. Our last letters 
from Boston (late in Jan y ) inform us that your father, 
mother, & little Betsey were all well, but the town by no 
means in a happy state. We had plann'd to ourselves 
an agreable time when you came to London, having a 
pretty house genteely furnished, looking into the Park 
& large enough to have afforded you every accommoda- 
tion you could wish, but alass ! like other human pros- 
pects the vission is gone, at least for the present, and God 
alone knows what is to be my future destiny. Your 
sister, who has a mind not to be met with among millions, 
possesses more fortitude than I do on this occasion, and it 
is one of the greatest blessings left me that she will not 
be unhappy in adversity, should it please God to continue 
it to me, but I will hope for the best, and that this cloud 
may pass over. I have had my health but indifferent of 
late, but hope retirement in the country will restore it. 
Betsey & Grenville are very well, and desire to be affec- 
tionately remember'd to you. When you write, direct 
for me at Barlow Trecothick, Esq r ' 8 , Bucklersbury. By 


all means take care of your health. Sacrafice every pleas- 
ure and amusement to it : it will afford you infinite hap- 
piness in reflection that you have escaped what has 
destroy'd the health of many. Adieu, dear Jemmy, and 
believe me to be sincerely & affectionately yours. 

J. Temple. 


Covent Garden, March 15 th , 177L 

Gentlemen, — Having begun my petition to the House 
of Coihons upon a larger scale, after confering with proper 
members, I reduced it to as small compass as the sufficience 
& perspicuity of proper matter wou'd permit, and now 
send a copy of it. As soon as completed yesterday morn- 
ing, waiting on the Lord May r , in order to its presenta 11 , I 
found him less spirited for the business than before, & en- 
clined to postpone the presenta 11 , whereupon I observed 
that it was uncertain what measures the min rs wou'd 
take, that some time past when a petit n from another 
Colony was prepared & proposed to be presented in sea- 
son, administra" got it delay'd, and afterwards when 
offer'd objected with success that it came out of time, 
and that in point of fairness to all parties, as well as 
safety to my constit ts , I earnestly desired my petit n might 
be presented that day before the House proceeded to their 
considerations at large on the state of American affairs. 
He at length assented & received my petit n accordingly, 
having in the course of what passed observed min rs cou'd 
carry any point they were set upon ; to which I answer'd 
that was no sufficient reason, I thought, for ceasing oppo- 
sition & despairing of the commonwealth, wherein he 
agreed. Then going directly to M r Oliver's, & finding he 
was gone to the House I went thither, where being in- 
form'd that the Lord May r was not come, nor Gen 1 Conway, 

1774.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 361 

for whose use I carried a copy of my petit n , I went up 
into the great comittee room to speak with Ald n Oliver, 
whom I found in the chair, which, upon speaking with 
him, I was satisfied he cou'd not leave in season to assist 
or second the Lord May r . Then returning towards the 
lobby, the under doorkeeper met & told me the Lord May r 
had come out of the House & enquired for me ; where- 
upon as soon as possible I got the doorkeeper to send in 
a message to let his Lordsh p know I was waiting in the 
lobby, where I staid a considerable time in painful sus- 
pense till S r Jos. Mawbey came out & told me the Lord 
May r had desired him to present my petit n , being unac- 
quainted with the usual proper proceeding, and after say- 
ing a few things he went into the House, & soon coming 
out again told me the Speaker endeavour' d to throw cold 
water upon my petit/ 1 , but after making proper enquiry 
into the nature of the Council on whose behalf I peti- 
tioned he directly return'd into the House with the spirit 
proper for presenting it. After waiting a considerable 
time he came out again, & told me he had got my petit n 
so far allow'd & accepted as to be laid upon the table, 
where it wou'd lye ready to be taken up when any preju- 
dicial measure shou'd require it. Upon asking what 
countenance the House shewed when it was read, he 
answer' d, favorable by many ; & the quest n being put 
whether it shou'd be received, a considerable majority 
ans d in the affirmative. The min r , I found, with another 
member sitting on the treas ry bench, at first rather ridi- 
culed the petit 11 ; however he did not chuse to divide the 
House upon the quest 11 . Among other things S r Jos. told 
me Gov r Pownall objected that it did not appear I was 
the proper agent for the Council ; to whom he answ d my 
authority wou'd be shewn when I appear'd & produced 
my proofs, afterwards adding, they were once very near 
calling me in. Upon the whole S r Joseph behaved ex- 
tremely well, with the spirit & dispatch proper for pre- 


sen ting my petition imediately before the House proceeded 
upon American affairs. The reading and admittance of 
my petition in a full House is a favourable circumstance. 

It is impossible for me in the present interesting state 
of the Province affairs, and my concerns therein, to ac- 
quaint you with many particulars otherwise desirable ; 
however I must by no means longer omit mentioning 
what gave me great pleasure, to wit, that when your 
affairs were consider'd in the House of Lords, the right 
of Parliament to tax the Americans was not only denied 
by Lord Cambden, esteem'd by many the most able judge 
of this question in the kingdom, but he, according to my 
information, with great learning & historical knowledge 
shew'cl that taxation •& representation were inseparable 
companions, among other things reading in the House a 
passage^ in M r Locke, heretofore cited by me in some pub- 
lic essay for this purpose. In case I had in my petition 
expressly opposed the parliamentary right of taxation, in- 
stead of stating the rights of the Colonies incompatible 
with it, in order to give proper proofs of the same, and 
so laying the proper foundation of opposition, my petition 
would certainly have been rejected. 

March 17. 

I wrote in haste on the 15 th in order to dispatch my 
letter, with copy of my petit n & the dupli fces by the Capt ns 
Loyd & Scot, who, I understood, were on the point of 
sailing, but going into the city at noon I found their 
departure was postponed for a short time. At present I 
have not much to add, & less time for doing it. On Mon- 
day, having risen early, & been in a constant state of 
hurry & anxiety until my petit n was admited, I then went 
away directly to get necessary sustenance, geting home 
about five, having before coming away declined writing 
to the Speaker, as the doorkeeper had proposed, for the 
favour of leave of admitance into the House. According 
to my information next morning great disappointm* took 

1774.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 363 

place by the principal persons, men of the greatest weight, 
in the opposition not speaking at all, and L d North's drift 
seem'd to be to adopt the ancient maxim, divide & impera, 
and to make the town of Boston the chief source of all 
the opposit n made by the Colonies to the measures of 
governm* &, by punishm* suitable to this idea, to make 
an example of them in terrorem to others, supposing the 
old maxim proximas ardet wou'd not take place in the 
Colonies. • 

Lord Cambden was not at home yesterday when I went 
to wait on him, whereupon I left, to be deliver'd to him 
at his return, a copy of my petition to the House of 
Comons, & a printed copy of my late petit 11 to the King, 
&c. American affairs being appointed to come on in the 
House of Lords to-day, upon my waiting on him this 
morning his Lordsh p told me his serv fc inform'd him 
Serg* Baldwin had left some papers for him which he 
had not look'd into, & he was in such haste that I had 
barely time to inform him that Calais, which you are 
sensible was obtain'd by conq* at the expense of much 
blood k treas re , had in process of time right of election of 
two members to sit in Parliam* granted by act of Par- 
liam*, to which he seem'd quite a stranger, the knowledge 
whereof, after making many researches in vain, I had at 
length acquired. The right of taxation being hastily 
ment d , he said an act of Parliam* hung over his head, and 
at my coming away said he shou'd be glad to see me 
any other time ; and as the min rs proceed against you 
by bill, that will give opportunity of course for my 
waiting on him. 

I am with the greatest respect for you gentlemen & the 
other members of the Honorable the Council, 

Your most obedient & most humble servant. 


The Hon ble John Erving, W m Brattle, Jas Bowdoin, & Ja s Pitts, 

Esq es . 




The petition of W m Bollan, Esq r , Agent for & in behalf 
of the Council of the Province of Massachusetts Bay, and 
likewise of himself and the other inhabitants of the town 
of Boston, most humbly sheweth : 

That the " bill for the immediate removal of the offi- 
cers concern'd in the collection & management of his 
Majesty's duties of customs from the town of Boston in 
the Province of Massa tts Bay in North America, and to 
discontinue the landing, discharging, lading & sniping of 
goods, wares, & merchandize at the said town of Boston, 
or within the harbour thereof," at present depending 
under consideration of this Hon ble House,* contains va- 
rious provisions, proposed to be enacted, inconsistent with 
the ancient & just rights, meritorious services, lawful pos- 
sessions, reasonable customs, usual comforts of life, & 
common social benefits, with other important interests of 
all the persons in whose behalf this petition is presented, 
long held in amicable conjunction with the other inhabit- 
ants of the Province, and the most desirable connection 
with innumerable persons employ' d in manufactures, 
trade & navigation in Great Britain, whereby they have 
been well maintain'd & prosper'd, and moreover inconsis- 
tent with the general circulation of American comerce, 

* This bill, commonly known as the Boston Port Bill, was introduced into the House of 
Commons March 14, 1774. Mr. Bollan wrote a short letter to Mr. Bowdoin, under date of 
March 18, 1774, and in a postscript, which is dated March 23, he adds: "I am preparing 
in all haste my petition ag* the Blockade Bill to be presented, if possible, to-day before the 
House goes into a Com teo , and therefore cannot add save that I can find no real abatem 1 of 
mini violence. Inclosed you have my last night's paper, w<* mentions the departure of 
dispatches for seizing certain offensive persons. Whether true or false, 1 can neither say 
nor enquire, and am far from being the first man min rs w (1 inform." — Eds. 


from which so great benefits are daily received by this 
kingdom various ways. 

Wherefore the petitioner humbly prays that he may be 
heard before this Hon ble House, in order to prevent these 
provisions from passing to be enacted. 



Boston, March 30 th , 1774. 

S R , — Agreable to what we wrote you the 20 th and 
24 th December, your letter of the 1 st of September was 
laid before the Council, who thought proper to communi- 
cate it to the House of Representatives, together with 
your letter of the 18 th of October, 1771, to which you 
refer for the proposal contained in it relative to the east- 
ern part of the Province. A joint committee of the two 
Houses was appointed to consider those letters ; but the 
attention of the lower House was so much engaged about 
the Chief Justice and other affairs, that their committee 
could not find time to enter on that business till towards 
the close of the session of the Court, the sudden & unex- 
pected prorogation of which prevented any thing being 
done in it. 

As Lord Dartmouth approved your proposal, and we 
have not heard any objection made to it, we think it 
would forward it if you were to confer with his Lordship 
in order to know the situation and quantity of land proper 
to be sequestered for the supply and growth of mast-trees 
for the royal navy; the Province right to which land to 
be transferred to the Crown, and the Crown in lieu of it 
to give up all rights to trees growing or that shall grow 
on all other lands in the Province, and to vest the General 

* The signatures to this letter are autographs. Apparently only the original was sent 
to Mr. Bollan, and the " duplicate " remained in Mr. Bowdoin's hands. — Eds. 


Court with the absolute right of granting all other lands 
within the Province to the eastward of Sagadahoc River, 
not already granted, or become private property. 

The dependence of the Justices of the Superior Court 
on the Crown for their support has given universal un- 
easiness. Four of them have given assurances they will 
receive no such support, but the Chief Justice having for 
some time secretly received a stipend from the Crown, 
and in his letter to the House of Representatives in con- 
sequence of a resolve they sent to him, having manifested 
his intention still to receive it, they impeached him before 
the Governor and Council. What has past on this sub- 
ject between the several branches of the General Court 
we send you by this conveyance for your information. 
You'll observe by the Governor's last message to the two 
Houses, which put an end to the session the 9 th instant, 
that he says some of their votes, resolves, and other pro- 
ceedings strike directly at the honor and authority of the 
King and of the Parliament. We do not know what the 
Governor refers to, and are certain that nothing done by 
the Council is intitled to such a high censure, or any cen- 
sure at all, as you may judge by the papers. If any thing 
should be attempted to the disadvantage of the Province 
in consequence of the proceedings at the session, or on any 
account whatever, the Council doubt not your endeavours 
will be exerted to prevent it. 

A grant of twelve hundred pounds sterling for your 
services to July last was made to you this last session, 
but has not been consented to by the Governor. The 
Governor's speech at the opening of the session gave the 
Council occasion in their answer to it to enter on the affair 
of your agency and the justice of your being compensated 
for it. Tt was hoped as no reply was made that the Gov- 
ernor was convinced of the reasonableness of such a com- 
pensation, and that he would have signed the grant, or at 
least recommended to the Ministry to give him liberty for 

1774.] WILLIAM B0LLAN. 367 

such a purpose ; and this last it is yet hoped he has done. 
The speech and answer you have herewith. 

In behalf of the Council of Massachusetts Bay we are 
very respectfully, S r , 

Yr. most obed* serv*. 

John Ervtng. 

James Bowdoin. 

James Pitts. VCom* 

Samuel Dexter. 

John Winthrop. 

William Bollan, Esq b . 


Covent Garden, May 12 th , 1774. 

Gentlemen, — On Thursday, the 5 th ins*, having com- 
pleted my petition to the House of Lords, I waited on the 
Duke of Richmond, who after kindly receiving it said he 
was ready to present it without delay, at the same time 
taking notice that the chief debate upon the bill wou'd 
not take place til the third reading, which wou'd be some 
day in this week : whereupon I observed that the intent 
of my petition being to check the proceedings upon the 
bill, I was rather desirous in point of fairness that the 
petition shou'd be presented as early as might be consistent 
with prudence in other respects, and pray'd the favour of 
his Grace to present it when L d Cambden was in the House, 
& to consult his Lordship upon the conduct of the petition, 
having been disappointed of seeing him that morning ; to 
which his Grace assented, adding that he wou'd go to the 
House that day, & give notice of his having the petition 
to present ; and the next day I attended at the House of 
Lords until they arose, when I was inform'd the petition 
was not presented. Waiting on the Duke of Richmond 
the next morning, I understood it was thought best to 


defer presenting my petition til this week, and his Grace 
told me he had given it to L d Cambden for his considera- 
tion. From his Grace I went directly to L d Cambden's, 
where I was inform' d he was gone into the country, & it 
was uncertain what time he wou'd return on Monday ; 
wherefore on that day I attended at the House of Lords 
during the time of their sitting, and nothing was done, 
L d Cambden not coming down. On Tuesday morning I 
was again disappointed of seeing his Lordship, but attend- 
ing at the House of Lords a little before they arose, the 
Duke of Richm d & his Lords p came out of the House to me, 
& enquired whether I chose to be heard ; to whom I answ d , 
that I came prepared for that purpose, whereupon L d 
Cambden said it was proper for me to add that to the 
prayer of my petition directly, so that it might be then 
presented, and the Duke having given me the petition they 
return'd into the House, & I instantly wrote a few words, 
which I thought might suffice, and sent them in by a 
proper officer for their approbation or correction. He 
brought for answer that they desired to see me in the 
House ; upon which going in to them, they said the House 
was broke up : praying the favour of their reading the 
words I proposed to be added to the petition, L d Cambden 
said they wou'd do very well. They told me the petition 
wou'd certainly be presented the next day. Yesterday 
morning, having somewhat alter'd the expression relative 
to my being heard, I carried it on paper to L d Cambden, 
who approving it, after satisfying his Lordship's enquirys 
respecting the course of judicial proceedings in the Prov- 
ince, the petition being then concluded, I waited on the 
Duke of Richmond with it, who was so far persuaded of 
success that he said I shou'd certainly be heard. Upon 
his presenting it, after its being read by the Clerk, he 
proceeded to the support of it, wherein he was well seconded 
in the course of the debate, which on the part of adminis- 
tration was begun, I understood, by Lord Mansfield, which 

1774.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 369 

I instantly thought did not bode well for your interest. 
In conclusion a division taking place upon the question, 
whether I shou'd be heard, 21 Lords voted for it, & 57 
against it ; after which the bill being read, the debate was 
renew'd, and finally the question being put, whether the 
bill shou'd pass, the like number of 57 voted for it, & 21 
against it.* 

When waiting on L d Cambden this morning, I desired 
to know the reason of the Lords' refusing to hear me, to 
which he answ d , " the worst ; they were resolved to pass 
the bill, & I came to stop their proceedings," adding that 
if an angel had come from Heaven it wou'd not have 
availed, tho' the minority upon the division, he said, was 
greater than he expected. From his Lords p I went to the 
Duke of Richmond, who told me among other things that 
the Secry of State in the debate said it was necessary to 
go on til the Colonies acknowledged the superiority of this 
country ; whereupon he asked whether the right of taxa- 
tion was intended to be included ; to this it was answ d that 
a general submission was requisite, which in his Grace's 
sense of the matter, if I understood him aright, was 
certainly intended to comprize the power of taxation. 
Inclosed herewith you have a copy of my petition as pre- 
sented to the Lords, save that the articles of the petit n 

* This was the bill " for better regulating the government of Massachusetts Bay," under 
the authority of which the Mandamus Councillors were appointed. Horace Walpole's ac- 
count of what took place in the House of Lords contains some additional particulars. " On 
the llth the Bostonian Bill was agitated in the Lords. Bolland, the agent, petitioned to be 
heard, and was rejected, as by the Commons, on a division of 57 to 20. The Duke of Rich- 
mond spoke warmly for Boston; said they would be in the right to resist, as punished un- 
heard, and, if they did resist, he should wish them success. — Lord Camden spoke out too, 
though more moderately, saying he loved this country so well that, though in the wrong, 
he should wish it success. He then more warmly attacked Lord Mansfield, whom he treated 
as author of the bills and of all the present measures. — Lord Mansfield, in a speech of an 
hour and a half, very artful but very timid, returned no attack, but purged himself of the 
bill, which he protested he had never seen till printed — a falsehood too gross and incredible 
for any art to palliate. — Lord Sandwich and Lord Lyttelton defended the bills, and the 
latter, as usual, attempted to provoke the Duke of Richmond. The House sat till eleven, 
when the bill was voted by about the same number as had rejected Bolland ; but to colour 
the violence with more names, proxies were produced. The next day eleven lords pro- 
tested." (See Walpole's Last Journals, vol. i. p. 364.) — Eds. 



were numbered in the copy, tho' not in the original, for 
my own use upon the expected hearing, so that they might 
be answ d by the like numbers given to the corresponding 
proofs & reasons prepared to support the whole, article by 
article. When I settled the petit n to the House of Coin 8 
with M r Dowdeswell, I proposed adding to the prayer my 
desire of being heard in support of it, to which he answ d 
in effect that my doing so wou'd be liable to this mis- 
construction, that altho' the allegations in the petit n of 
the merits of the Prov ce & Council were made with intent 
to strengthen the reasons of the prayer for suspending all 
proceedings till the Prov ce cou'd have notice & make their 
regular defence, yet upon their hearing me, at my own 
desire, to weaken the force of the object 11 against their 
precipitate proceeding without giving such notice & time 
for defence, it wou'd probably be said they had heard all 
I had to offer in your behalf ; wherefore it was better the 
prayer of the petition shou'd stand as you rec d it, & that 
my being heard shou'd be moved for in the House as a 
matter proper in its nature, wherein I acquiesced upon 

It may be some little comfort to you in your present 
state of distress to be assured that sev 1 of the most 
respectable persons in point of understanding & public 
vertue in each House of Par? have steadily contin d from 
the first your faithful friends, altho' some others have 
been less firm in their attachm* ; but I desire no ment n 
may be made of the names of those noble or other worthy 
pers 8 aforement d who exerted themselves in the defence of 
your cause upon the sharpest trials, as it may be very 
disagreeable to some of them & tend, various ways, to 
lessen that free coniunication which is frequently neces- 
sary to negotiate your affairs in the most beneficial 

The third bill, " for the impartial administra 11 of jus- 
tice" consider'd in its nature, execu 11 & example appears 

1774.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 371 

to me pregnant with great grievance & danger ; where- 
fore I must now go on with my preparations to oppose 
it, tho' without the least prospect of success, having been 
several ways informed that the projected measures of ad- 
ministration were immutable, & that all the remaining 
bills wou'd pass & be ready for the royal assent by this 
day se'night ; tho' a member of Pari*, who call'd upon me 
yesterday noon seem'd to think the King wou'd not come 
to the House til next day. L d Cambden hath already as 
deep a sense of the evil nature of this third bill as you 
can desire; yet his great abilities, noble spirit, & high 
character, I am satisfied, will be attended with no suc- 
cess, and, to use his own words, where most applicable, if 
an angel was to come down from Heaven upon the pres- 
ent occasion it wou'd signify nothing. 

I am with the greatest respect for you, gentlemen, and 
the other members of the Council, 

Your most obedient & most humble servant. 


P. S. The Province service in the arduous course of it 
hath been much distress'd, and myself with it, by the 
want of Provincial authority ; but in the debate that 
arose in the House of Lords upon my last petition, I 
understand, my authority from the Council was not call'd 
in question. 

The Hon ble John Erving, W m Brattle, Ja s Bowdoin, & Ja s Pitts, 

Esq ks . 


Boston, Sept r 6, 1774. 

Sir, — You have been informed that y e two Houses 
at the last session made a grant to you of £1200 st s , 
which it was hoped the Gov r would sign, but he has not. 


Since w ch y c act of Parliament for altering the form of 
government has been rec d , and it has, as was expected, 
thrown every thing into confusion. The people of this 
Province are universally incensed against it, as are all 
the Colonies, particularly those of New England, who 
will not suffer y e act to be carried into execution, and are 
determined to risk y e consequences, whatever they may 
be. The Courts in several of the counties whose terms 
have come about since y e arrival of y e act have done no 
business, y e juries unanimously refusing to serve ; and 
this will doubtless be y e case in every county in y e Prov- 
ince. Town meetings go on as usual, w ch have produced 
county meetings by delegates, and these, 'tis said, will 
produce a Provincial meeting by com tees from those dele- 
gates. One spirit actuates the whole for the purpose of. 
self defence. In consequence of it most of y e new ap- 
pointed Councillors have resigned their offices ; and 'tis 
expected all of them will do the same ; so that there will 
probably not be a Council of y e new stamp at the time y e 
Gen 1 Court are called to meet, viz., on y e 5 th of Oct r next. 
But if there should be such an one, it is next to certain 
y e Rep 8 (for y e choice of whom precepts are just issued) 
will refuse to do business with them. This is a summary 
of the confused state into w ch y e measures of Ministry 
have thrown the Province ; but we have the satisfaction 
to know that the other Colonies look on our case as their 
own, and that they will not be tame spectators of our 
destruction or insolvency. It is hoped the Congress will 
propose measures that will be agreable to, and adopted 
by, all y e Colonies, and to which a reasonable & intelli- 
gent British Ministry can & will acceed. M r Josiah 
Quincy, Jun r , a gentleman of y e law, will hand to you 
this letter. He can give you a particular account of y e 
situation of things here, and such as may be relied on. 
You will find him an ingenious, sensible, and worthy 
gentleman, and as such I beg leave to recommend him 

1774.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 373 

to you.* In y e present situation of things I do not see 
how a grant to you can be compleated, but should they 
take such a turn as to make it possible I am persuaded y e 
Charter Council, who are looked on as still existing, will 
do their endeavour to compleat it. As a quondam mem- 
ber of it my endeavours shall not be wanting for that 
purpose. I hope your Vindication of y e Rights of y e Col- 
onies will appear soon, and am, with y e greatest esteem 
& respect, Sir, 

Y r most obed* hble serv*. 


Boston, May 2, 1774. 

D B Sir, — Your dismission from office, of w ch we had 
some uncertain reports, was confirmed by your letter of 
y e 8 th March. It is very surprizing it should have been 
without any previous notice or cause assigned. However, 
as it was from a misapprehension and mistaken idea of 
your conduct, if y r friends conjectured right concerning 
y e cause, and as you stand in high repute as a revenue 
officer, it is to be hoped you will be restored to the favour 
of government. In y e meantime your consciousness that 
you have not forfeited it must induce you to apply for it 
by your friends, and encourage you to expect it. I think 
you judge perfectly right in determining to continue in 
England from that expectation. Your brother tells me 
that besides a late remittance he should send you in a 
short time £500 sterl g , and if you should need £500 
more, and my being surety for you will procure it, you 
may apply to Mess rs Lane, Son, & Fraser for the loan 
of it, to whom I have wrote a letter of this date, an 

* Mr. Bowdoin also wrote on the same day a letter to Dr. Franklin, introducing Mrr 
Quincy, extracts from which are printed in Proceedings, vol. xiii. pp. 153, 154. — Eds. 


extract of which is inclosed. They are y e only mercan- 
tile correspondents I have in England, and y e only 
persons of whom I can ask this favour. I hope my dear 
daughter & her little boy are well, and that she continues 
in good spirits. Whatever be your fortune in England, 
she and you may depend on finding a sincere friend here 
in, d r S r , 

Y rs , fa. 

Sept r 10, 1774. 

D R S B , — The foregoing is copy of y e letter I sent you 
inclosed in mine to Mess rs Lane & C°, w ch I hope you have 
rec d . The situation of things in this Province is very 
disagreable, and they seem ripening to a crisis. Six 
regiments are now here, and more are expected, for y e 
purpose of enlightning our intellects, and convincing us 
that our lives, liberty, & property are safer in y e hands 
of foreigners than our own. For y e same purpose also 
are intended y e acts for shutting up our port, abolishing y e 
Prov ce Charter, &c. But notwithstanding these impositions 
and other that may arise from y e Canada acts, y e people 
maintain a firmness w ch astonishes y e exec rs of those acts. 
There is a remarkable spirit of union among y e Colonies, 
w ch on this occasion took place in most of them prior 
to any comunications from & to each other ; and 'tis 
probable it will be guided in its operations by y e proceed- 
ings and advice of y e Congress at Phil a , to w ch M rs 
Bowdoin's illness prevented my going. The measures 
they shall recomend, 'tis to be hoped, will have a happy 
tendency to open y e eyes of administration & bring y e two 
countries once more into a state of tranquillity and 
mutual confidence in each other. M r Josiah Quincy, 
Jun r , whom you know very well, will deliver this to you. 
He is a worthy, sensible gent n , and can give you an exact 
acc° of American affairs. I beg leave to recomend him 
to y r civilities. I have just returned to town from M r8 
Bowd , who is in y e country on acc° of her health. She 

1774.] CHARLES CHAUNCY. 375 

sends her love & best regards to you and our dear Betsy 
& her little boy, in w ch she is most affectionately joined 
by, d r S r , 

Y r most. 

f 1 M B Quincy, f> Lyde. 


Boston, Sept r 13 th , 1774. 

Sir, — You very much disappointed me in sending no 
answer to several letters I wrote you of some importance, 
all w ch I suppose you received, as I took care y t they 
sh d be safely delivered. 

Your friends here were grievously affected w th the 
news of your being displaced, but we all hope a better 
state of things will soon take place, w n you may again 
be well provided for. 

I shall write you nothing about the operation of the 
Boston Port Bill and the two others y fc soon followed 
upon it, as the bearer of this, M r Josiah Quincy, a young 
gentleman you may not perhaps know, will be able to 
give you as full and particular an account of our affairs 
in consequence of them as you can desire, as also of all 
other facts relative to this and the other Colonies. He is 
a person of more y u common powers, of a sprightly ge- 
nius, thorow acquaintance w th the constitution and laws 
of the country, and a perfect friend to the principles of 
true liberty. He goes from hence to England strongly 
disposed to serve this and the other Colonies, w r in he may 
be able ; and he will be the better able to do this, if by 
means of gentlemen of character at home, he may get 

* Rev. Charles Chauncy, D.D., minister of the First Church in Boston. He was born 
in Boston, Jan. 1, 1705, graduated at Harvard College in 1721, and died Feb. 10, 1787. 
See Ellis's History of the First Church, pp. 188-208. The letter now printed was com- 
municated to the Society, in October, 1893, and may be found in 2 Proceedings, vol. viii. 
p. 288; but it has been thought desirable to include it here with other letters of the same 
period. — Eds. 




opportunities of conversing with those, either in or out of 
administration, who may have it in y r power to be ser- 
viceable to us. The favor I would ask of you is only this, 
that you would lend him your help in getting into the 
company of such persons as these ; in particular y* you 
would procure for him an opportunity and permission 
to see and converse with Lord Chatham, Lord Temple, 
and such others as you may introduce him to of like 

I suppose M r Bowdoin will write you upon this same 
occasion, and w th the same view. I will at present add 
no more, after due compliments to M rs Temple, than that 
I am, 

Your friend and humble servant. 

Charles Chauncy. 

The Hon ble John Temple, Esq k . 


Bath, South Parade, 13 October, 1774. 

My Lord, — A few days ago I received a letter from 
M r Pownall, in which he informed me that I was super- 
ceeded in the appointment of Lieut* Governor of the Prov- 
ince of New Hampshire in America. I had before casually 
heard such a report, but did not give any the least credit 
to it ; and of all the extraordinary treatment I have met 
with as a servant of the Crown for a series of years past, 
without any reason assigned, this I the least expected, 

* William Legge, second Earl of Dartmouth, was born June 20, 1731, and graduated at 
Trinity College, Oxford. In July, 1705, he was appointed President of the Board of Trade 
and Plantations, which office he held for about a year, until the formation of the Duke of 
Grafton's ministry, when he resigned. In August, 1772, he succeeded Lord Hillsborough as 
one of the Secretaries of State, and retained this office until November, 1775, when he was 
made Lord Privy Seal. On the downfall of Lord North's administration, he resigned, and, 
with the exception of serving for a few months under the Coalition as Lord Steward of the 
Household, he held no further political office. He died July 15, 1801. See Dictionary 
of National Biography, vol. xxxii. pp. 417-419. — Eds. 

1774.] JOHN TEMPLE. 377 

after what your Lordship said to me on the subject. You 
will remember that when I waited on you to inform you 
that I was dismissed from the office of Surveyor General 
of the Customs, & shewed you Lord North's letter wherein 
he expressly refused giving me any reason for my dismis- 
sion, your Lordship express'd concern, & said you was 
very sorry for it, never having heard a word of such Lord 
North's intention till that morning. I then ask'd your 
Lordship whither any part of my conduct had been dis- 
pleasing to you, for that I held an honorary appointment 
under your department, and beg'd to know if that was 
also taken from me. Your Lordship reply 'd, " It was 
not, that the King had said nothing to you about remov- 
ing me, & that out of regard to me you had mentiond 
nothing to his Majesty concerning that appointment." I 
thank'd your Lordship for such marks of your regard & 
kindness which perfectly agreed with all your former 
sentiments, & told you I should patiently retire into the 
country till the thick clouds then gathering over Amer- 
ican affairs might be dispersed, and never heard a word 
of my being superceeded till some months after your 
appointment had taken place. From that goodness of 
heart I had always been taught to think your Lordship 
possesses, I trust you will not be displeased at my thus 
laying open my mind to you, as I mean it with the utmost 
deference & respect. I feel myself an injured man, and 
fully believe both you and Lord North will in the calm 
evening of life, if not before, think I have had great in- 
justice done me, and possibly from a review of things may 
regret the treatment I have met with. With regard to 
American affairs, on account of which, 'tis conjectured, I 
have met with so much unfair & unjust treatment, the 
searcher of all hearts knows it has been my most ardent 
desire to contribute all in my power to prevent them from 
getting to the unhappy, if not alarming, state they are 
now in. From the situation I was for a long time in in 


North America, I early foresaw the height those unhappy 
affairs would arrise to, if not stop'd in their infancy; and 
as I thought the evils were principally owing to govern- 
ment's being misinform' d & misled, I felt the stronger 
impulse to give my superiors every usefull information in 
my power. Your Lordship knows I have done it to you. 
I have done it to my Lord North, & with the utmost truth 
& sincerity ; and from the advantages of connection & na- 
tural interest added to the official experience I have had 
in that country, I am sure my intelligence has always 
been well founded. And I am sincerely sorry to find so 
much of what I expressed my fears about to your Lord- 
ship now coming to pass. I may in point of prudence 
have been too zealous & too open in those affairs ; I 
always felt happy in finding, as I thought, your Lordship 
in the same sentiments, and if ever a man suffer'd for 
endeavouring to prevent great & public evils I have for 
endeavouring to prevent those now rappidly approaching 
to both that & this country. I love America ; it is my na- 
tive country ; but I never had the most distant wish for its 
advancing to a state incompatible with the honor & pros- 
perity of this its parent country. And whenever the time 
comes when a reconciliation shall be the object of govern- 
ment, I think I have an influence there, at least in the 
northern provinces, that may be usefull, and no man living 
will have greater pleasure than myself in exerting it to 
the utmost in contributing to bring about the desirable 

Had my own advancement & prosperity been alone 
the object of my persuit, for several years past common 
policy would have dictated to me another line of conduct 
than that I follow'd, especially in M r Grenville's adminis- 
tration, when I might have had any thing in his power 
to give, honors as well as appointments, in preference to 
those on whom they have been confer'd, but then I must 
have deceitfully flatter'd that minister with the probability 

1774.] WILLIAM BOLLAN. 379 

of success to his American plans, when in my conscience I 
foresaw if persisted in they must ruin him as a minister. 
I rather chose to confine myself to truth and justice in all 
my letters to him & in my conduct as an officer of the 
Crown in that country ; & I know M r Grenville lived to 
be convinced I was essentially right in all my representa- 
tions to him, & I have now the real sattisf action to feel in 
my own breast that I have conscientiously intended well 
in all my subsequent conduct as a servant of the Crown. 

The place your Lordship has dismissed me from was 
merely honorary. I never was benefited a single shilling 
by it the whole fourteen years of my appointment. I 
however highly valued it as an honor done me by my 
sovereign, and as an office that was created purposely by 
M r Pitt to give me rank in that country, there never hav- 
ing been a Lieut. Governor to that province before, and it 
was the first new commission his present Majesty ever 

I beg your Lordship will believe me to be, with the 
utmost respect, 

Your Lordship's most obedient and most humble ser- 

J. Temple. 


Covent Garden, Dec r 6 th , 1774. 

Sir, — Enclosed you receive the King's speech to his 
new Parliament, and the address moved for in the House 
of Lords, & the proposed, but rejected, amendment of it, 
with the noble protest of several dissenting Lords. Yes- 
terday the address of the House of Coihons, of a similar 
nature, but omiting the word ' abhorence', with an 
amendment proposed by Lord John Cavendish, came un- 
der consideration, & upon debate the amendment was 
rejected by 264 against 73, the intent of it being, like 


that in the Lords House, to prevent the House from 
giving their sanction to any ministerial American meas- 
ures, before they had received the proper evidence of 
the particulars & consider'd them. A worthy member 
informs me that the noble Lord who moved for the 
address, & is generally understood to speak the sense of 
the ministry, declared in support of his motion to this 
effect, that the address when made wou'cl not preclude 
the consideration of any future measure, for instance the 
abrogation of the late acts respecting your port & prov- 
ince ; and several members say that the ministry declined 
ent'ring into the merits of the American dispute, & that 
L d Cambden cou'd not by the most noble speech raise up 
L d Mansfield, who is understood to be min r in that House, 
to give him any answer. The Comons address was not 
reported to-day, & so remains in comittee til to-morrow. 

M r Quincy by his thoro' knowledge of your present un- 
happy state, with its causes, & his zeal for your public 
rights & interests, fully answers your recomenda 11 , and 
upon knowing his arrival, I was desirous of his appear- 
ance in the House of Comons, to ascertain the state & 
disposition of the Colonies, which, you are sensible, have 
been so far misrepresented. I took some preparatory 
measures for this purpose, but at present do almost de- 
spair of obtaining it. The King may, I conceive, take 
further measures in consequence of the two addresses, 
without previous application to the two Houses ; but I am 
enclined to think his min rs will not advise to proceed to 
the last extremity without Parliamentary sanction. 

After various avocations unavoidable, & great, expen- 
sive changes of my first plan of proceeding, conforming 
to the varying state of the times, to ascertain the rights 
of the Colonies & promote their interest in the most bene- 
ficial mailer j I completed my defence of their civil rights, 
& on the meeting of the new Parliam fc , which I judged the 
most convenient time, after presenting numerous copies 

1775.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 381 

to noble & other worthy persons ; published it under the 
title of " The Rights of the English Colonies estab d in 
America stated & defended ; their merits & importance to 
Great Britain display d , with illustrations of the benefits 
of their union & of the mischiefs & dangers of their con- 
tinued dissention," and purposed to send by the Diogenes, 
which will sail ere long, but not so soon as I expected, 
100 copies address'd to M r Erving, to whom I pray you 
will give my best compliments. 

Error, you are sensible, is infinite, and error begeting 
error, & violence in council violence in action, one of the 
most noble empires in the world is most strangely brought 
into great danger, from which I conceive, we have all 
abundant reason to pray for deliverance. 

I am, with great esteem & regard, Sir, 

Your most obedient & most humble servant. 


P. S. M r Quincy having undertaken to transmit this 
in the most secure maner, you will receive it under his 

The Hon ble James Bowdoin, Esq r . 


Boston, March 30, 1775. 

Sir, — This will be delivered to you by M r Dana,* a son 
of your old friend dec d , and his successor in y e practice of 
y e law. Our law Courts being shut, & his business sus- 
pended of course, he takes the opportunity this vacation 
affords him of seeing England. He is a sensible gent n 
and of a very good character, and can inform you how 

* Francis Dana, born in Charlestown, June 13, 174-3, graduated at Harvard College in 
1762, and died at Cambridge, April 25, 1811. The son of an eminent lawyer and patriot in 
the early stages of the struggle with the mother country, he was himself alike eminent aa 
a lawyer, a statesman, a diplomatist, and as Chief Justice of Massachusetts. — Eds. 



things are circumstanced here. I think it w d not be amiss 
to caution him against y e wiles of a certain politician on 
your side of the water. Good sense will not always 
guard a man against deception, especially if it happens 
that he has a good opinion of y e deceiver. The tools of 
ministry here have been very assiduous in their endeavors 
to bring the people to an acquiescence with their measures 
by applying to their passions, especially their fear ; and 
they pretend to believe, and have probably represented to 
their employers, that they have converted great numbers, 
and in consequence of this may have urged a perseverance 
in those measures from an expectation of their finally 
succeeding. But Ministry will find themselves deceived 
if they trust to such representations. The union among 
y e people in a determined opposition to ministerial oppres- 
sion is surprizing. It is prevalent throughout New Eng- 
land, and there are at least appearances of their providing 
and being prepared against y e worst. The same spirit is 
general in y c other Colonies, not excepting New York, 
where y e hirelings of Ministry, who thought they had 
gained the majority by their lies & incessant scribling, 
have lately had abundant evidence of y e futility of their 
endeavours for that purpose. We begin to expect y e result 
of y e deliberations of Parliament on American affairs. 
The King's speech and y e replies to it do not promise 
any thing favorable ; but it is hoped the petitions from y e 
trade & from several parts of y e kingdom will produce y e 
repeal of y e acts objected to, and thereby restore y e peace 
of y e empire. This hope is grounded on the national 
interest being connected with, and in a great degree 
dependent on, such a repeal. However, if it should not 
take place, or if on the contrary further severity and 
injustice should be resolved on, they will only serve to 
alienate y e Colonies still more, and may bring about a 
dismemberment of them from y e mother state ; but it is 
irksome to consider y e consequences, even if one were 

1775.] ABIGAIL ADAMS. 383 

wholly uninterested in them. What is the policy that 
prevails at present ? It excludes every idea of justice, 
honour, and philanthropy. It is a composition of y e con- 
trary qualities mixed with cruelty and ignorance or some- 
thing worse. At least that is the American idea of it ; 
and it has produced its genuine effects, such as were to be 
expected from it. It has destroyed all confidence in ad- 
ministration, and has necessitated the Colonies to provide 
for their own safety by y e best means in their power. 
God succeed them. Wishing them success is wishing 
prosperity to y e nation, whose interests have been sacri- 
ficed, in order to create a new fund for inslaving it 

I am to thank your for your letters of y e 6 th & 10 th of Dec r , 
and particularly for your pamphlet on the Rights of the 
Colonies, which I have read with great pleasure. I com- 
unicated it to Capt. Erving, D r Cooper, & other gentlemen, 
who much approve and thank you for it. The Diogenes, 
by w eb you say you shall send 100 copies to M r Erving, is 
not yet arrived. With great sincerity I join with you in 
hoping that the Colonies " by their wisdom & fortitude 
will to their perpetual honour in these days of severe trial 
promote y e comon safety and welfare," and am with great 
truth & regard, 

S r , j\ &c. J. Bowdoin. 


Braintree, June 16 th , 1775. 

Sir, — I have the pleasure of acquainting you that I 
last evening received letters from Mr. Adams, wherein he 
informs me that the Congress are determined to support 

* Wife of John Adams, second President of the United States. This letter and the one 
from Thomas Cushing, which immediately follows, will be found in 2 Proceedings, vol. viii. 
pp. 61, 62. — Eds. 


the Massachusetts, that there is a good spirit among them, 
& that they have an amazing field of business before them ; 
that it is extensive, complicated, and hazardous, but their 
unanimity is as great as before ; that they have a number 
of new and ingenious members ; that the military spirit 
which runs thro' the continent is truly amazing. The 
City of Philadelphia turns out 2000 men every day. Mr. 
Dickinson is a Col 1 ; Mr. Reed a L* Col 1 ; Mr. Mifflin a 

The bearer of one of the letters, Mr. Hall, is a Maryland 
gentleman, accompanied by his brother ; gentlemen of 
independent fortunes, y e one a lawyer, the other a physi- 
cian, and one of the best families in Maryland, and are 
come 500 miles as volunteers to the camp, where they 
intend to spend the season. 

Please, Sir, to accept my most respectful regards to 
Mrs. Bowdoin, and ardent wishes for the restoration of 
your health, from your 

humble servant. 

Abigail Adams. 


Philadelphia, June 21, 1775. 

Dear Sir, — You will doubtless have been informed 
that the Congress have unanimously appointed George 
Washington, Esq r , General & Commander in Chief of the 
American forces. I beg leave to recommend him to your 
respectful notice. He is a compleat gentleman. He is 
sinsible, amiable, virtuous, modest, & brave. I promise 
myself that your acquaintance with him will afford you 

* At that time one of the delegates to Congress from Massachusetts. He was born in 
Boston, March 24, 1725, graduated at Harvard College in 1744, and died Feb. 28, 1788. 
From 1707 to 1774 he was Speaker of the House of Representatives, and from 1779 until his 
death Lieutenant-Governor of Massachusetts. See Drake's Biographical Dictionary, p. 237. 
— Ens. 

1775.] RALPH IZARD. 385 

great pleasure, and I doubt not his agreable behaviour & 
good conduct will give great satisfaction to our people of 
all denominations. General Lee accompanies him as 
Major General ; I hope his appointment will be agreable 
to our people, & that he will be received with all due 

I am, with great regard, 

Your most humble serv*. 

Thomas Cushing. 

The Hon ble James Bowdoin, Esq k . 


Weymouth, 2 d Sept T , 1775. 

Dear Sir, — I am just favoured with your letter, & 
am sorry to find that G. is not in England, as I should 
have been glad of a little conversation with him. He 
will not be sent to any other place you may depend upon 
it j his employers know how necessary it is to have him 
here. If you should hear of his return, pray let me know 
of it.t General Lee's letter is one of the best I ever 
read ; I have received great pleasure from it. His enter- 
ing so heartily into the cause after taking a considerable 
time to think of it shews that he not only approves of it, 
but thinks it must be successful. His letter does him a 
great deal of honour, & if he can keep himself within 
bounds, he will do a great deal of good, & add much 
to his military reputation, which is already considerable. 

* Ralph Izard was born near Charleston, S. C. in 1742, and was educated at Cam- 
bridge, England. He afterward returned to America, and married a niece of Lieutenant- 
Governor De Lancy of New York. In 1771 he settled in London, but not long after the 
outbreak of hostilities between the mother country and the Colonies he went on the Conti- 
nent. From December 1776 to July 1780 he was in the diplomatic service of Congress ; 
he then returned home, and subsequently filled various important offices. He died near 
Charleston, May 30, 1804. See Appleton's Cyclopaedia of American Biography, vol. iii. 
p. 372. — Eds. 

f The reference is presumably to General Gage, who did not, however, embark from 
Boston for England until about a month after the date of this letter. — Eds. 



M r Burgoyne's answer is contemptible. He is of opinion 
that resistance is justifiable when the kingdom is under 
certain circumstances which he describes. The kingdom 
is most assuredly at this time under those circumstances, 
& yet he, in consequence of a royal mandate, is gone to 
oppose that resistance, &, if it is in his power, to render 
it ineffectual. He says that every American knows that 
he may get rid of taxation for ever. I wish he had been 
explicit & informed us how. He could not mean that 
we should get rid of taxation by accepting of L d North's 
proposition. I conceive that would be saddling ourselves 
with a perpetual tax. There are contradictions & absur- 
dities in the letter. He will gain no credit by it as a 
writer, & his principles will offend both parties. The 
King, I am sure, will not be pleased with him for pre- 
suming to be of opinion that resistance is justifiable in 
any case whatever. Lee has shewn himself a wise man 
in declining the proposed interview.* It would certainly 
have had the ejfect he mentions. Suspicion, or the least 
want of confidence, might prove fatal. You think that 
Boston will be attacked. I shudder at the thoughts of it, 
as it must necessarily occasion a prodigious effusion of 
blood. Should the attempt prove unsuccessful, the conse- 
quences may be fatal ; but if they should succeed & the 
army be beaten & taken prisoners, there would soon be 
an end to the contest. M rs I. joins in complim ts to you & 
M rs T. We are sorry that we cannot see you here ; but 
expect that pleasure at Bath, where, I believe, we shall 
go about the latter end of this month. Adieu. 
I am, affectionately, your friend, &c. 

T am sorry for Oliver's disappointment. You find his 
principles are good. 

* For some account of the correspondence between General Lee and General Burgoyne, 
see Sparks' a Life of Charles Lee in Sparks's American Biography, second series, vol. viii. 
pp. R2-80. The letters themselves are printed at length in Fonblanque's Episodes from 
the Life and Correspondence of the Right Hon. John Burgoyne, pp. 161-173. — Eds. 

1775.] JOSIAH QUINCY. 387 


Braintree, October 1 st , 1775. 

Deak Sir, — I have been interrupted with company all 
this evening, or this letter woud be much longer. It gave 
me sensible pleasure to hear you are growing better ; and 
am much obliged for your kind regards transmitted by 
the bearer, who tells me he must return early in the 

Deacon Palmer, who came from Watertown this morn- 
ing, tells me that a vessel from Quebeck, loaded with 
wheat, flour, & live stock upon deck, is taken by one of 
our cruisers & carried into Salem ; that an old officer in 
an intercepted letter to Gen 1 Gage informs him " that 
gov* must not expect any assistance from Canada this 
year, as Gen 1 Carlton dares not venture to muster the 
militia, least his orders for that purpose shou'd be diso- 
beyed, for the poison of that d — d word Liberty has found 
its way into Canada, and spread like a pestilence in every 
part of it." A gent n of intelligence from Connecticut in- 
forms that Gen 1 Schuyler has sent out recruiting parties 
who had inlisted two thousand Canadians into the Conti- 
nental service, and expected many more wou'd inlist ; that 
one of the Livingston family, settled in or near Mount- 
real, has urged the General to march to S fc Johns as soon 
as possible, as he had engaged 300 men to cut off Gen 1 
Carlton's retreat from thence to Montreal ; that Gen 1 
Washington had recommended to the Court to fit out a 
number of arm'd vessels to intercept supplies to Boston, 
which, he says, will be immediately complyed with. 

* Josiah Quincy, commonly called Colonel Quincy, was born in Braintree in 1709, and 
graduated at Harvard College in 1728. Subsequently he was engaged in commerce and 
ship-building in Boston ; but at about the age of forty -seven he retired to Braintree, where 
he continued to live until his death March 3, 1784. He took little part in public affairs, but 
was warmly attached to the American cause. See Josiah Quincy' s Life of Josiah Quinc}', 
Jr., pp. 3, i', Edmund Quincy's Life of Josiah Quincy, pp. 4-17. — Eds. 


You are obliged to M r E. Church for the inclosed news- 
paper. He brings me the melancholly news of his brother, 
Doct r Church, being taken into custody, yesterday after- 
noon, upon suspicion of holding a traitorous correspondence 
with the enemy. A letter in characters is intercepted, 
going by way of Rode Isl d , to Boston, directed to Major 
Cane, which he confesses he wrote, but says it was wrote 
to his bro r in law Flemming, & by his desire was directed 
to the Major. He says it contains only exaggerated acco ts 
of the formidable state of our army, and the probability 
of the Canadians' revolting to our side, and is in answer 
to a letter from Flemming to him, but upon his brother's 
asking him for a sight of that letter, he cou'd not tell what 
was become of it. I fear the suspicion of his guilt is but 
too well grounded. 

There are perpetual desertions both from the army and 
navy. A boat with 7 seamen or marines from a man of 
war in Nantasket Road, being ordered with an officer to 
guard George's Isl d , bound the officer & run away with 
the boat to Hingham last night, & past thro this town in 
their way to head quarters this morning. A large ship 
full of men, but no red coats visible, went into Boston 
yesterday. Her bottom, sides, & sails discovered a long 
passage. I suspect they are Highlanders from Scotland. 

If your health will permit, I shou'd be much obliged for 
your sentiments upon the present flood of paper credit. 
I fear it will have a very ill effect upon our outstanding 

M rs Quincy & my dear daughters join in respectfull 
compliments to you & your good lady, and sincere wishes 
for the speedy restoration of your health, with, dear Sir, 

Your most ob fc hum. serv*. 

11 o'clock. Jos A Quincy. 

P. S. Your obliging l r of 20 th of August came safe to 
hand this day. 

1775.] JAMES BOWDOHS". 389 


Midboro, Oct 3, 1775. 

D B Sir, — I thank you for the intelligence contained in 
your obliging letter of y e 1 st inst*. What relates to y e D r 
I was much surprized at, having entertained a high opinion 
of his principles as a patriot. I cannot but hope that on 
strict enquiry he will turn out an honest man, notwith- 
standing appearances to y e contrary. Rather than think 
otherwise, I have indulged a conjecture that to answer 
some political purposes with regard to y e enemy, the dis- 
covery of a traitorous correspondence is only pretended, 
in order that by subjecting him to apparent inconveniency 
on acc° of it, he might be y e better qualified to act y e part 
of a spy, if disposed to undertake in so hazardous a busi- 
ness. Or, may not his intercepted letter, though wrote 
in characters, be his vindication when the contents of it 
are certainly known ? An excellent decypherer, if there 
be none nearer, may be found at Salem, I mean M r Oliver. 
I really wish it were sent to him, as I cannot but appre- 
hend it would serve to clear the D r from the imputation 
of treachery, w th w ch it would give me great pain to find 
him justly chargeable. If it sh d turn out so, it is probably 
y e effect of ministerial bribery, in w ch case there is no room 
to doubt that the same poison has been and will be ad- 
ministred to others. I hope our state physicians will 
seasonably discover y e symptoms, so as to prevent a mor- 
tification, or any ill consequences, by an excision of the 
morbid and corrupt parts. In return for y e news coinuni- 
cated by y r letter I w d comunicate some to you if I could. 
Whether y e following be such to you you can best tell. 
You ha-ve heard of Col° Gorham, the Nf d l d Gov r ' s arrival 
lately at Boston from England. His business here I have 
been informed is to raise and comand a regiment of rangers 




to distress his countrymen. My informant is one Clifford, 
who was pilot of y e ship of war (Cap 1 Price) in w ch M r 
Gorham came passenger, and arrived at Boston ab fc 3 weeks 
ago. The pilot says he was told on board y e s d ship that 
M r Gorham was to comand a regiment as above mentioned. 
This pilot was master of a vessel coming this way from 
Nf d l d , and on George's Bank was pressed by Price into his 
service as pilot. He says he was informed at y e land that 
a great number of Irishmen, ab* 700, had been inlisted as 
rangers to serve ag st y e d d rebels of N. E. and supposes 
that these are for a part of Gorham's regiment. The ship 
you mention going into Boston full of men (not red coats) 
are probably part of them. He says further the comand- 
ing officers there have orders to seize all provisions and 
send them to Boston, which occasion d him to move off: 
precipitately with his vessel soon after his arrival. Price 
had 12 weeks passage from Engl d , and when he was told y e 
situation of things here, he swore it was a d d lie. How- 
ever, on his arrival at Boston, & finding y e truth of it, he 
told Gifford he w d not have come to America could he 
have known how matters were circumstanced, and that 
he had been assured he sh d find it in a state of perfect 
quietude, by w ch he doubtless meant a perfect subjugation 
to ministerial tyranny. Several men of war & transports 
are gone up y e Sound. In their way they put into Holmes's 
Hole, and by threatning to cannonade y e town forced y e 
inhabitants to give them a few sheep. He also cannon- 
aded Tarpolin Cove, but without effect. They had taken, 
among others, a vessel of Col Bowers from Jam a and a 
brig of Harry Bowers from y e same place with a valuable 
cargo. The latter got ashore on Eliz a Isl d and one of y e 
tenders came after her, but was so warmly rec d by y e c° 
station d there that she was oblig d to make off, and our 
people have since carried the brig safe into Dartim with 
G or 8 prisoners. Paper credit we will make y e subject of 

mean time be assured of 


next conversation ; m y ( 

1775.] JOSIAH QUINCY. 391 

mine & M rs Bowdoin's most respectful regards to you & y r 
good lady & family, and believe me to be, w th great truth, 

Yrs. &c * 


Braintree, Dec r 11 th , 1775. 

Dear Sir, — Having tasted the pleasure of your friendly 
correspondence, I feel myself unhappy to see it thus long 
discontinued. Permit me therefore to renew it by trans- 
mitting to you and your good lady our cordial compliments 
of congratulation upon the safe return of your dear and 
only son from his travells. We shall rejoice to hear his 
health is restored & confirmed ; and that the advantages 
he has reaped are equal to the opportunities he has had of 
seeing and conversing with such a great variety of charac- 
ters and the inumerable objects that must have come 
under his observation during his absence abroad. Had 
Infinite Wisdom been pleased to grant me the pleasure of 
embracing such a dear object, I also should have experi- 
enced the heart-felt joy which is your happy lot, & beyond 
discription ; but it was otherwise ordered by our universal 
parent, to whose will without repining I humbly endeavor 
to submit.! 

I quite long to see and converse with you upon our new 
measure of commerce established by law in all cases what- 
soever upon the severest penalties. Quere : whether such 
a law will not operate as injuriously as another that has 
been, and still is, so zealously combatted ? Pray be so 
good as to come converse with me, or write to me upon 
the interesting subject. It wou'd be but an amusement 

* For a letter from Samuel Adams to James Bowdoin, dated Philadelphia, Nov. 16, 
1775, with Bowdoin's answer, see Proceedings, vol. xii. pp. 226-228. For a letter from 
Bowdoin to Thomas Cushing, dated Dec. 9, 1775, incidentally giving some account of 
General Washington, see 2 Proceedings, vol. viii. p. 289. — Eds. 

f Josiah Quincy, Jr., died within sight of land, on his voyage home from England, 
April 26, 1775. — Eds. 


to the young gentleman, your son, to be the bearer of a 
letter to Braintree, pay a visit of a day or two to head 
quarters, and return with a pocket full of news. I own I 
am a little selfish in such a suggestion, as in such a case 
I may hope for a history of his travels. 

It is a grateful sense of the faithfull services of my black 
female servant that prompts me to take the freedom of 
begging you would be so good as to enquire of Col Sprout 
in your neighbourhood whether he knows anything of a 
negro man named Sharper (belonging to M r Enoch Brown) 
who is husband to said servant & it's said lives w th the 
Col . She has not seen or heard from him these two 
months, and after diligent enquiry can't learn whether he 
is alive or dead. If you shou'd hear of him, & that he is 
coining here, please to let us have the pleasure knowing 
how you all do, and that you have not forgot a family that 
has, and will always rejoice to receive your friendly visits. 
I am, most respectfully, 

Your faithfull & affec te serv\ 

Jos* Quincy. 


Middleboro, Dec r 16, 1775. 

Dear Sir, — About a week after parting with y e agre- 
able company that were so politely entertained at your 
house my disorder returned upon me with great violence, 
and tho abated still continues to such a degree that I can 
only acknowledge y e rec 1 of your kind letter of y e 11 th . 
I thank you for your congratulations on y e arrival of my 
son, who last week went to head quarters to see y e gentry 
there, and is not yet returned. The next tour he will do 
himself y e pleasure to wait on you agreable to your 
obliging invitation. Col° Sprout came to see me yester- 
day. He tells me Sharper, y e person you enquire about, 

1776.] ROBERT PIERPONT. 393 

has been a considerable time on a trading journey to 
Dartmouth & the neighbouring towns, from whence he 
returned a few days ago, and he thinks has since pro- 
ceded to y e camp at Cambridge. I wish you and your 
good lady would give us y e pleasure of a visit, and then 
we will discuss y e subject you mention. Mine and M rs 
Bowdoin's best regards wait on you and her and y e agrea- 
ble branches of your family. I am, dear Sir, 
Y r most obed. hble. serv*. 

J. B. 


Roxbury, March 5 th , 1776. 

Dear Sir, — In answer to your request, would let 
you know our peeple began to cannonaed the inemey at 
8 o'clock last night from Cobbel Hill. This I tack was 
to divert them whilst we tuck possetion of Dorchester 
Hiths on the Neck ; and it answerd the purpos very well, 
for alltho the enemy cept a hevey fier all night, yet never 
turnd it on our grate interprize, for we had 380 teams im- 
ployed to carey on the neserys, and such a set of works 
prepaierd as I bleve has astonished our inemyes to a 
grate deggree. For the transports which lay at Nan- 
tasket are cuming up, and as they waier wooded and 
watred, and all feeted with dubbel berths, I congeter thay 
are going to imbark. We cannot learn what damag we 
have dun them, but supose sum, as thayer was much 
screeching heard when our shell thundred through the 

* On the back of this letter is a copy, or the original, in Bowdoin's handwriting, of a 
letter from him, dated Middleborough, Monday evening, March 4, in which he says: 
"Being much unwell, which obliges me to keep at home, and being greatly anxious to 
know the event of the attack on Boston, and how it is conducted, I have sent the bearer to 
get the best intelligence he can; and I shall esteem myself much obliged to you if you will 
favour me with a few lines containing the fullest account of it, and what has happened in 
consequence of it, so far as hath come to your knowlege." Lieutenant Robert Pierpont, 
presumably the writer of this letter, was a person of consideration and influence in Rox- 
bury. See Drake's Town of Roxbury, pp. 29, 30, 82, 327.— Eds. 


sentuer of the town. We have rec d no grate dameg. 
God has again woonderfuley apeard for his peepel. To 
him let us render our gratefull thanks. We have now 
3000 men in hey sperits, well fortefyd on the hills on 
Dorchester Neck. Thayer was one man kill d & 5 wounded 
on Cobbel Hill ; one badley wounded on our side. Am 
sorey to hear of your indesposeton of body ; hope I shall 
sun have the plesuer to hear you are in the ingeoyment 
of a good state of helth ; in the mean time remain 
Your frind & hu. ser\ 


P. S. The ingenear brackfasted with me this morning, 
sath our peepel are well preparerd and wishing for a seley 
from the enemy, which I think, if ever, will be at 11 
o'clock this day, as the tide will then sute. 


Braintree, March 13 th , 1776. 

Dear Sir, — The bearer waiting upon you sooner than 
I expected, and the present critical situation of our 
military affairs, will, I hope, excuse my postponing an 
answer to your friendly and obliging letter of the 29 th of 
January last.* I have often revised and contemplated the 
affecting sentiments it contains. They treat upon a 
subject of the last importance to creatures of our rank in 
the scale of beings, and should be glad to communicate 
to you the impression they have made upon my mind. But 
at present, I doubt not, it will be more entertaining to 
give you, as far as I am able, an account of our late 
military manoeuvres. 

On Saturday, the 2 d ins fc , about half after 10 clock in 

* The letter referred to is printed in Quincy's Memoir of Josiah Quincy, Jr., pp. 484- 
487. — Eds. 

1776.] JOSIAH QUINCY. 395 

the evening, our army began to cannonade the town from 
Roxbury, which was immediately returned with redoubled 
vengeance from the lines upon the Neck. Upon this 
the firing commenced from every battery of ours round 
the town and from those of our enemies in it, during 
which upwards of 300 teams loaded with facines, frames 
for barracks, &c a , escorted by 2 or 3,000 troops, passed 
undiscovered and even unsuspected over to Dorchester 
Neck, and there entrenched themselves upon the two 
highest hills, of which works the next morning we had 
a most delightfull prospect from the top of my house. 
The successfull opening of this scene, and the smiles of 
Providence upon our labour by such remarkable fine 
weather, excited in my mind sentiments of gratitude 
which you will better understand than I can express. 

The next morning a number of large transports which 
winter'd in Nantasket Road got under sail & went up to 
town. There was little or no firing in the daytime, but 
the cannonading began again all round the two succeed- 
ing nights, very moderately on our side, but with all the 
fury of disappointed malice on the part of our enemies. 
One of their bombs was thrown within a third of a mile 
from the College. We had two men killed, and one or 
two wounded. The legs of 6 men were taken off by 
a ball from one of our cannon, many wounded, and 
great damage done by our bombs to the houses in 

Between one k two o'clock on Wednesday morning we 
were alarmed by an express from Gen 1 Washington, in- 
forming me that a number of vessels with troops on 
board fell down the preceeding afternoon, & desiring to 
be immediately informed if they shou'd make an attempt 
upon our shores. From Tuesday morning the firing 
ceased on both sides. On Saturday in the afternoon 
a quantity of facenes were carted to Nuke Hill (so 
called) directly opposite to the fortification, in open 


view of the enemy ; and in the evening a few foolhardy 
unfortunate wretches went & kindled a fire upon the top 
of the hill. This insult provoked the enemy beyond all 
bearing, which they discovered by firing some heavy 
cannon on Wheeler's Point, which obliged our men to 
retreat on the other side of the hill, where they were 
soon fired upon from the block house upon the Neck, 
& 4 of them shot dead on the spot. The firing from 
different batteries was incessant the whole night ; many 
hundred balls were picked up by our men the next day, 
but don't hear of any further damage done on either side. 
On Sunday near 30 large transports fell down below the 
Castle, all of them deep loaded (supposed) with military 
stores & Boston plunder. Sunday night no cannonading, 
of w ch our troops took the advantage, and opened a 
battery on a small hill nearer the town, & planted therein 
two heavy cannon. This occasioned a warm fire, both 
from their batteries and ours. From the last mentioned 
battery the enemy's shipping in all probability suffered, 
for yesterday the Admiral's ship & near 40 sail of vessels, 
great & small, some men-of-war, but chiefly transports, 
fell down, some to King's Road, & the rest to Nantasket 

This morning we were visited by Miss Unice Paine, who 
was so kind as to let me copy an extract from a letter 
she rec d from Watertown the last evening, which is 
annexed hereto, and will probably be more entertaining 
than all I have wrote above, as it comes more directly 
from the fountain of intelligence. However, I beg your 
acceptance of the whole as a testimony of the esteem and 
affection with which I am 

Your faithfull humble servant. 

Jos A Quinct. 

P. S. M rs Quincy & M rs Lincoln join me in respectfull 
regards to you, your lady, & good family. 

1776.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 397 

Mar. 10 th . M r Murray,* a clergyman din'd with the 
General yesterday, and was present at the examination of 
a deserter, who upon oath says that 5 or 600 troops 
embarked the night before without any order or regular- 
ity ; the baggage was hurried on board without an 
inventory ; that he himself helped the General's baggage 
on board, and that two hospital ships were filled with 
sick soldiers, and the utmost horror and confusion 
amongst them all. The General rec d a l r from the select- 
men informing him that in the midst of their confusion 
they apply'd to M r Howe, who told them that if M r 
Washington woud order a cessation of arms, and engage 
not to molest him in his embarkation, he woud leave the 
town without injuring it ; otherwise he would set it on 
fire. To which the General replyed that there was noth- 
ing in the application binding on M r Howe. He there- 
fore could not take any notice of it. 

The deserter further says, that M r Howe went upon a 
hill in Boston the morning after our people took posses- 
sion of Dorchester Neck, when he made this exclamation : 
" Good God ! These fellows have done more work in one 
night than I could have made my army do in 3 months. 
What shall I do ! " 

James Bowdoin, Esq r . 


Middleboro, March 23, 1776. 

I perfectly agree with you, d r Madam, that G. Brittain 
is in a disgraceful situation, not only with regard to what 
you have with great propriety instanced in, but also in 

* Rev. John Murray, chaplain of a Rhode Island regiment. See 2 Proceedings, vol. ix. 
p. 69. —Eds. 

f Daughter of Col. James Otis, wife of Gen. James Warren, and author of a History 
of the American Revolution. She was born in Barnstable, Sept. 25, 1728, and died in 
Plymouth, Oct. 19, 1814. — Eds. 


her sending Commissioners to treat with those she calls 
Rebels. These Commissioners are probably by this time 
arrived at Phil a , but how they can introduce with a good 
grace the errand they are come upon is difficult to con- 
jecture. We are told they will not have any thing to do 
with the Congress, but will treat with the Colonies sepe- 
rately. If this be their plan, it requires no great share 
of the prophetic spirit to foretell they will not be able to 
execute it, for it is not likely that any of the united Col- 
onies will enter into a seperate treaty with them, but 
undoubtedly refer them to the Congress, which represents 
the whole, and which for many reasons is the only suit- 
able body to negociate with them. The ministry have 
hitherto refused to acknowledge that body as the repre- 
sentative of the Colonies, and do not allow that the Colo- 
nies conjointly can legally be represented at all ; and 
from hence, and also from the hope of gaining advan- 
tages by seperate treaties, proceeds the disinclination to 
treat with the Congress. But it appears likely they must 
bring their stomachs to it, if they mean to do any thing 
in a way of negociation. The Commissioners have un- 
doubtedly a discretional power to act according as they 
find things circumstanced ; and when they are informed 
of the disgraceful precipitate flight of their troops from 
Boston, the firmness & intirety of the union of the Colo- 
nies and their preparedness & capacity to defend them- 
selves, and therefore that the British troops can make no 
great impression, they will condescend, I imagine, to 
treat with the Congress. But if you should ask, Mad m , 
how will the Congress conduct upon this occasion ? my 
answer is, extremely well : for it is manifest by their 
proceedings hitherto they are good politicians, & have 
requisites for negociation, — good sense, historical knowl- 
edge, and integrity. The two former of these will secure 
them from imposition and circumvention, and the latter, 
I trust, from bribery & corruption. If they are not cor- 

1776.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 399 

ruptible, we need not be distressed about the issue of the 
negociation. But as ministry are said to be compleat 
adepts in the practice & arts of bribery, it is highly prob- 
able those they employ on so interesting & important an 
occasion are not less so, and come amply provided from 
the national coffers with the means of it. They are 
therefore in an especial manner to be guarded against in 
that view. If a treaty should be entered upon, I appre- 
hend it cannot be done with dignity & propriety on the 
part of America before the whole British armament, both 
by sea and land, depart from America ; and this ought to 
be insisted on as an essential preliminary to the negocia- 
tion. In this idea some Europeans do, & all Americans 
should, concur. 

As to the treaty itself, in order to be lasting it must 
be founded on meer interest, the mutual interest of the 
parties ; the free discussion & settlement of which imply 
mutual independance, without which it is in vain to 
expect they can take place. In order to such a discus- 
sion and settlement, does it not seem necessary on our 
part there should be a declaration of independance on 
Great Britain, and without such a declaration must not 
the Congress enter upon the treaty with great disadvan- 
tage ? as their silence upon that head will be construed to 
imply an acknowledgment that the interests of America 
are to be considered as subordinate to those of G. Britain, 
and to be regarded no farther than they have a tendency 
to promote her interests. Divers objections may be made 
against such a declaration, but I would refer the objector 
to that excellent pamphlet intitled " Common Sense," 
which, if he is not influenced by private interest & attach- 
ment, will probably silence all his objections, and disciple 
him to the author's doctrine, that an independance on 
G. Britain has now become absolutely necessary to the 
well-being of the Colonies. Thus, Mad m , in obedience to 
your command, for such I esteem the most distant inti- 


mation of your pleasure, I have given you some crude 
thoughts on the subject of the expected negociation. I 
wish they were intitled to the approbation of so good a 
judge in politics. Such as they are, I beg leave to sub- 
mit them to your candour, & am, with the greatest esteem, 
Mad m , 

Your most ob dfc & very hble. serv\ 

We all present our best regards to you & your good 
gentleman, who, we hope, is perfectly recovered. The 
report of my d'r's arrival is not true. 


Boston Aug 8t 19 th 1776. 

Dear Sir, — I rec d f M r Gerry a packet from you con- 
taining a Russian book on Comets, and Yattel's Droit des 

The former agreable to your desire I have sent to M r 
Oliver at Salem together with your billet. The latter 
when I have looked over it I shall send to the President 
of Harvard College as a present to the Library from } T ou. 
D r Cooper shewed me your letter to Lord Howe & his 
L d ship , s to you w ch occasioned it. It gave me great pleas- 
ure, as it has all that have seen it. His L d ship's sensibility 
must be touched with some parts of it, unless Court-man- 
ners and Court-politics have benumbed it. Some persons 
think they see a treaty of comerce growing out of this 
correspondence with L d Howe, and that he will take hold 
of the opportunity you give him of treating with Congress 
on that head. But from y e act of Parliam* authorizing 
y c King to appoint Com" and from L d Howe's circular let- 
ter & declaration grounded upon it, it seems very unlikely ; 
especially as ministry appear very confident of success in 
their military manoeuvres, and have declared by y e King's 

1776.] JAMES BOWDOIN". 401 

Speech at the late prorogation of Parliam* that the force 
in America with y e blessing of Providence will be sufficient 
to quell the Rebels. Can you, my d r friend, with all your 
philosopical gravity refrain a smile when you hear such 
men talk of a dependence on Providence ? 

As the enemy have by this time collected all the force 
designed against New York, it is probable we shall soon 
hear of a general attack. By what we learn here of the 
number and state of our troops, we have reason to hope 
it will be an unsuccessful one. But it is proper to pro- 
vide against the worst that may happen. If nothing 
decisive should take place before y e first of Dec* I am 
under great concern lest the Continental troops (whose 
enlistments expire at that time) or a great proportion of 
them will then quit the service. The reinlistment last 
year you know was attended with great difficulty, and I 
am afraid it will be with much greater the present. But 
as this is a matter of capital importance, there's no doubt 
Congress will early take effectual care about it. As y e 
giving great bounties to inlist men for a short time can- 
not be supported long, we must fall upon some other 
method of raising them. For this purpose, would it 
do to form the militia in each town into four or five 
divisions, as equal as may be as to number and circum- 
stances, and require the personal service yearly of one of 
these divisions, they casting lots to determine the order 
or succession of their service? If any individuals in the 
division called to duty, could not attend, they should be 
obliged to procure able bodied men (voluntiers) in their 
stead, which the other divisions could supply. Such . 
voluntiers having rec d an equivalent for this extra-ser- 
vice not to be excused on that acc° from duty when called 
upon with the division they belong to. Or would it do 
to give a handsome bounty once for all of money or land, 
on condition of enlisting for as long a time as the war 
shall continue ? This last method is liable to an objec- 


tion from desertions, deaths, & other casualties, in which 
cases every campaign would make recruits and further 
bounties necessary. I hope some effectual way will be 
found to procure men to engage in y e service during the 

1 am glad to find that notwithstanding your country- 
men have had so many good slices of you for these forty 
years past, there's enough remaining of you to afford 
them good picking still. Notwithstanding the past 
regales they still expect to feast upon you, and to feast 
as usual most deliciously. " Like beggars once indulged 
they ask for more." 

I am my dear friend, with the sincerest regard, 
Y r affection' 6 hble. serv*. 

J. B. 


to the hon ble the council & house of representatives of the 
State of Massachusetts Bay. 

MipdleboPvOugh, May 16, 1777. 

Hon ble Gent n , — On the re-settlement of the govern- 
ment two years ago, when I had the honour of being 
again chosen a member of the Council, I thought it my 
duty, tho in a very ill state of health, to accept the choice. 
I was induced to this, not only from a hope of restoration 
and being thereby in a capacity of attending the business 
of that important trust, but more especially from a desire, 
at so critical a juncture, of co-operating with the friends 
of American liberty in the most effectual measures for its 
defence & support. I wish my health had permitted a 
more constant attendance for that purpose, and that it 
would permit my attendance in future ; but as I find this 
is not the case at present, nor likely to be so, I am under 
a necessity from a principle of faithfulness to my country, 

1777.] JOSEPH WARD. 403 

whose salvation & prosperity are the objects of my warmest 
wishes, of resigning my seat at the Board, and to beg the 
favour of the Hon ble the Council & House of Representa- 
tives to supply it with another person. 

In the mean time it is, and will be, my ardent prayer 
that the Sovereign Arbiter of the fate of nations may suc- 
ceed your endeavours, and the endeavours of the United 
States, to establish the common liberty on the most per- 
manent basis. 

I have the honour to be with the most profound respect, 
hon ble gent n , 

Y r most obed. hble. serv fc . 

James Bowdoin 


Morristown, May 28 th , 1777. 

Sir, — As you may be retired to your country seat, out 
of the way of the best intelligence, I do myself the honour 
to inform you of the movements in this quarter, although 
nothing important hath yet taken place. Our army has 
been collecting for some days from all the remote detach- 
ments and outposts, and forming an encampment near a 
river called Bound Brook, about six miles from the en- 
emy's lines. General Washington, with the troops which 
yet remain here, will set off: this day for the encampment 
at Bound Brook. It is uncertain when any capital attack 
will take place, as many of the troops are undisciplined, 

* Col. Joseph Ward was the second son of Deacon Joseph Ward, of Newton, and was 
born July 2, 1737. On the formation of the arm} 7 around Boston, after the skirmishes at 
Lexington and Concord, Gen. Ward appointed him secretary and aide-de-camp. He was 
afterward made Mustermaster General by Washington; and in the latter part of 1778 he 
was taken prisoner by the British. He was exchanged in April, 1779, and rejoined the 
army, continuing in the service until Feb., 1780, when he settled in Boston. Subsequently 
he married and removed to Newton, which he represented in the General Court. In 1804 he 
returned to Boston, where he died Feb. 14, 1812. Before the breaking out of hostilities 
he was a frequent and spirited contributor to the newspapers. See A. H. Ward's " Ward 
Family," pp. 60-62. — Eds. 


and the number not so great as the General would wish 
for. I cannot determine precisely the number now in 
camp, as it varies every day, but suppose it does not ex- 
ceed eleven thousand. If no general attack is made, I 
expect now the armies are so near that we shall have 
frequent skirmishes. Last Sunday a party of the enemy, 
about six hundred, advanced from their lines towards a 
scouting party of ours, and were attacked by two or 
three hundred of our men and driven back to their 
own lines with the loss of several men, among which, it 
is said, was a Colonel. We had only three men slightly 
wounded. We have frequent accounts from the enemy's 
camp by deserters ; it appears that they have some ap- 
prehensions of danger, as they are fortifying their posts 
at Brunswick and Amboy ; and from all circumstances I 
apprehend they are waiting for a reinforcement, and do 
not intend to hazard any thing great until that arrives. 
It seems probable that part of their troops in Canada will 
be ordered to reinforce General Howe, and the expedition 
against Ticonderoga laid aside for this campaign. As 
General Howe will want all the troops as a reinforcement 
to him that the British tyrant can furnish, I conceive 
there is very little danger of Boston's being disturbed by 

It must give pain to every good mind that our army has 
been so slow in forming. We ought before this hour to 
have driven the enemy out of the Jersies ; and I am sure 
it must wound the patriotic feelings of every worthy son 
of America that it has not been done. The General has 
doubtless been anxious to accomplish this great design, 
but he has not been furnished with men in due time. As 
he has now a respectable force (and delays we have ever 
found attended with misfortune) it is my humble opinion 
that we may attack the enemy soon with a good prospect 

* For some account of a letter of introduction brought by Burgoyne to Bowdoin, in 
1775, see Proceedings, vol. xiv. pp. 232, 233.— Eds. 


of success, and my wish that it may be attempted. In 
war we cannot have a chance for great advantage without 
the risque of loss ; and I hope American minds are now 
too firm to be greatly affected by the loss of a battle, if 
Providence should permit the tools of tyranny for once to 
prevail. Our men are in general healthful and in good 
spirits, and I persuade myself they will behave with spirit 
whenever they may be called to action. If the enemy 
should not have a large reinforcement this campaign, I 
think we shall have a good chance to drive them out of 
these United States before another winter. I have the 
honour to be, Sir, 

Your most obedient humble servant. 

Joseph Ward. 

The Honorable James Bowdoin, Esq r . 


Middleboro, June 20, 1777. 

Sir, — M rs Bowd n & I have just had the honour of your 
two letters of the 28 th ult° and are extremely glad to hear 
M rs S fc Clair and y r family were well when you left them. 
We find the letters were intended to be deliv d by the 
hand of your daughter Miss Betsy but that pleasure we 
were deprived of by our having removed from Boston to 
this place, to which we retired soon after the memorable 
19'* of April ; and have been here for the most part ever 
since, excepting some months since y e departure of the 

* Major General Arthur St. Clair was born in Scotland in 1734, and died at Greensburg, 
Penn., Aug. 31, 1818. He came to America as an officer in the British army in 1758, and 
in 1760 married at Boston Phebe Bayard, a niece of James Bowdoin. Two years later he 
resigned his commission in the army, and in 1764 settled in Pennsylvania. On the break- 
ing out of the war he was made a Brigadier General in the American army, and served 
in various capacities until the conclusion of peace. He afterward filled important civil 
offices, and from 1788 to 1802 he was Governor of the Northwest Territory, during which 
period he experienced a memorable defeat by the Indians. (See Drake's Biographical Dic- 
tionary, pp. 792, 793.) For a long letter from St. Clair to Bowdoin, dated July 28, 1777, 
see Proceedings, vol. vi. pp. 356-358. — Eds. 


enemy from Boston. My ill state of health has obliged 
me to quit public business ; but I hope y s relaxation and 
the balsamic air of the country in this fine season of the 
year will contribute to my restoration. In this situation 
it is not in our power to be advising in y e education of your 
daughter, which otherwise agreable to your desire, we 
sir 4 have been with great pleasure ; at least M rs Bowdoin, 
who is much the best qualified for such a purpose, would 
have given her best advice in it. # I am very glad to hear 
Gen 1 Washington's army is likely to be in so respectable 
a condition. It is very unfortunate that y e several States 
could not furnish their quotas of the army earlier, in 
which case Gen 1 Washington might have driven y e enemy 
before this time from y e Jerseys & New York ; and con- 
vinced them, that, although they can obtain a temporary 
lodgment on the sea coast, they cannot make a very deep 
penetration into the country. 

We have been very anxious for Ticonderoga, but by the 
last accounts from thence, things seam d to be so well situ- 
ated there, that an attack was not dreaded. If any thing 
extraordinary should take place, I sh d be very glad to be 
favoured with your acc° of it. Whenever the service will 
permit, it will give us great pleasure to see you at Mid- 
clleboro. It is said Gen 1 Gates is to command at Ticon- 
deroga. I beg you would present my respectful compl ts to 

I am with great respect. 

S r , yrs. &c. 

Brigad r Gen*- St. Clair. 

* Under date of May 28th, General St. Clair wrote to both Mr. and Mrs. Bowdoin, with 
regard to sending his daughter to Boston ''for some improvement in her education." and 
desiring to place her under the general oversight of Mrs. Bowdoin. To Mrs. Bowdoin he 
wrote, — "I shall esteem it as the greatest favour you can possibly do me to advise her to 
a proper place to lodge at, where there is a decent oeconomy in the family, without much 
noise or brawling at servants, which is an example young people very easily take up, as 
indeed they do insensibly the manners of those they are with, be they good or bad. I 
could wish her to receive such an education as might render her useful to her family, 
should she ever be mistress of one, and that might enable her to keep herself in tonn- 
tenance in whatever walk of life her fortune may throw her." — Eds. 

1777.] ARTHUR ST. CLAIR. 407 


Manchester, July 9 th , 1777. 

Dear Sir, — I have just time to acknowledge receipt of 
your obliging letter of the 20 th ult°, which came to hand 
this moment. As the evacuating Tyconderoga must have 
alarmed the country, and raised their curiosity at the 
same time, permit me to give you some account of that 
matter, with the reasons that induced me to propose it to 
the other general officers. 

The garrison consisted of about thirty-three hundred 
men, of whom two thousand and eighty-nine only were fit 
for duty, many of those mere boys altogether incapable of 
sustaining the fatigues of a soldier, naked and ill armed, 
not above one bayonet to every tenth man. The place 
nearly invested and their batteries compleated ; and from 
the intelligence of my spies the investiture was to be 
compleated on Sunday last, the day we left it, when all 
possibility of retreat or support would be cut oil'. The 
loss of this army, small as it is, was the inevitable conse- 
quence, and would have been a very great misfortune, 
much greater in my opinion than the loss of the post, as 
there would have been nothing left for the militia to col- 
lect to in this quarter to stop the progress of an enemy 
flush'd with conquest. I therefore determined to attempt 
a retreat whilst it was practicable, but previously consulted 
the other general officers, who were unanimously of opin- 
ion that it ought to be attempted without loss of time. 
We accordingly prepared for it that night, and, having in 
the course of the night embarked as many of our stores 
and provisions as possible, marched of at break of day. 
We should have got off altogether unperceived by the 
enemy, had it not been for the accidental burning of a 
house and the desertion of two men of the artillery who 
in the hurry went of with a small boat to the enemy. The 


rear of our army evacuated Mount Independance as the 
front of the enemy entered ; they exchanged a few shot, 
but did not offer to pursue, which I ascribe to their being 
the Brunswickers that took possession. A considerable 
body, however, were sent up a creek that enters some 
distance into the country, who next morning attacked our 
rear guard. They defended themselves very well, and 
tho' obliged to retreat killed and wounded a great many 
of the enemy, since which we have seen nothing of them. 
My design was to have marched to Skeensborough, but 
the enemy had got before me, which obliged me to change 
my route, and bear this way on account of provisions, 
which I shall be able to obtain tomorrow, when I shall 
proceed with every possible dispatch to join General 
Schuyler at Fort Edward, where I hope we shall soon have 
an army of force sufficient to stop the progress of M r 

I am very sorry that any cause should have obliged you 
to retire from public business, but more especially ill health. 
I heartily hope and wish that the country air may restore 

M rs Bowdoin will have some reason to think me not very 
polite to write you so long a letter to you, and take no notice 
of hers. I really have not time, but must beg the favour 
that you will make my excuse and present my most respect- 
ful compliments, and assure her I shall make amends the 
moment I can be settled. I am, with great respect, dear 
Sir, Your most obedient humble servant. 

A R . S T . Clair. 

The force of the enemy is seven British regiments, eight 
foreign ones, and a number of Indians and Canadians ; 
on the whole I think myself very happy to made my re- 
treat under their nose. 

The Honorable James Bowdoin, Esq b . 

1777.] JOSEPH WARD. 409 


Head Quarters, November 12 th , 1777. 

Sir, — I have been long waiting for the defeat of the 
British army, that I might have something to communi- 
cate worthy your notice, but the wished for event is yet 
to come. By acting too much on the defensive (in my 
humble opinion) we have lost the fairest prospect of suc- 
cess and the best opportunity for defeating the British 
army. Had we attacked the enemy before they advanced 
twenty miles into the country, it is probable they never 
would have seen Philadelphia ; but by attempting to de- 
fend the numerous fords over the River Brandywine we 
were obliged to divide our force, which gave them an 
opportunity to attack part of our troops with the main 
body of theirs, which circumstance occasioned our defeat. 
The enemy being detained several days to dispose of their 
wounded men, General Washington in the mean time re- 
treated over the River Schuylkill, and prepared his army 
for another action. On the fifteenth of September we 
recrossed the Schuylkill and moved towards the enemy, 
who were on their march for the city ; the next morning 
our army advanced to give them battle, the advanced 
parties engaged, but before the main body came up a 
heavy rain fell, which soon put an end to all firing. The 
two armies lay at a small distance from each other the 
remainder of the day and the following night. The 
storm continued very severe until the morning of the 
next day, and great part of our troops were exposed 
without cover ; our tents and baggage were left behind 
that the army might not be incumbered, by which means 
great part of our cartridges were wet and unfit for action. 
This misfortune defeated the General's design, and also 
obliged him to remain inactive until he could supply the 
loss of ammunition, and recruit the health and vigour of 


the troops, for they suffered greatly by the storm. Be- 
fore these could be effected, and the necessary dispositions 
made for a general battle, the enemy arrived at Philadel- 
phia. After this event the General had no other choice 
but to reinforce his army and attack the enemy in their 
camp, he therefore ordered great part of the troops from 
Peekskills to join him, and such of the militia as could 
be collected ; but before they had all arrived (one brigade 
from Peekskills and part of the militia had joined the 
army) proper dispositions being made for the attack, the 
army moved on the evening of the third of October to 
attack General Howe in his encampment at Germantown. 
We arrived at the enemy's lines half an hour after five 
o'clock in the morning, the action immediately ensued ; 
our troops behaved with spirit and every thing gave way 
before us ; for more than an hour we had a bright 
prospect of success, and began to anticipate a glorious 
triumph. But a thick fog together with the smoke ren- 
dered it so dark our Generals could not so well improve 
the decisive advantages they had gained, by reinforcing 
where we were too weak and pushing the enemy with 
more vigour where necessary ; by which means the enemy 
had too much time to recover from their surprize and dis- 
order, and our troops were exposed to get into disorder 
and to other fatal accidents. To this cause may be attri- 
buted our failing in the enterprize. I suppose you have 
seen an account of this affair published by authority, and 
therefore it is unnecessary to be more particular. Not- 
withstanding we left the field in possession of the enemy 
and did not reap the full harvest of victory, yet impor- 
tant advantages will, I trust, accrue from the enterprize. 
It proved to our enemies the spirit and force of our 
troops ; it proved to ourselves that the boasted discipline 
and valour of the British heroes will all give way when 
charged home with determined bravery. It has refuted 
the false notion which too many entertained, that failing 

1777.] JOSEPH WAED. 411 

in a general battle would ruin us (for we have failed of 
victory in two general actions, and have notwithstanding 
upon the whole been, I conceive, gainers by the actions), 
and it demonstrates to the sullen tyrant of Britain and 
his minions the impracticability of executing their designs 
without a vast augmentation of their forces. By this 
action we reduced them within a single point of ruin, 
and a mere casualty saved them from destruction ; and 
as we may repeat the attempt without hazarding the loss 
of our country, the chance is against them almost to a 
certainty of ruin. As our army received a reinforcement 
from Peekskills soon after the battle at Germantown, I 
expected another general attack would have been made 
very soon, and, I conceive it was the design of the Gen- 
eral, but for certain reasons it was delayed. 

The twenty-fourth of October was a day big with de- 
signs. A detachment of the British army, consisting of 
about two thousand men, was posted on the west side of 
the Schuylkill, opposite to their main army (which now 
lies two or three miles from the city) in order to throw up 
works to secure a retreat, and to command the neighbour- 
ing country to get provisions ; General Washington de- 
tached General M c Dougall with about four thousand men 
to cut off that body of the enemy ; our troops crossed the 
Schuylkill fifteen miles above the enemy the preceding 
day, marched down in the night and intended to surprize 
the enemy's camp at day break, but by some means they 
had intelligence of the design, and decamped before our 
troops arrived. They left marks of great precipitation 
in their retreat over the river to their main army, and 
destroyed the bridge which they had before erected to 
prevent our troops from pursuing. General M c Dougall 
burnt their encampment and returned. Had his design 
succeeded, an attack would have been made at the same 
time upon General Howe's encampment ; for this purpose 
two grand divisions of our army under the command of 


Generals Sullivan and Greene marched the same night to 
Germantown (the enemy having evacuated it previous to 
this time) and lay within a small distance of the enemy's 
lines, waiting for Gen 1 M c Dougall to begin his attack, 
which was to be immediately seconded by an attack upon 
Gen 1 Howe ; but for the reason above mentioned this well 
formed design failed, and our troops returned without 
accomplishing their wishes. However, our labour was 
not wholly lost, for such designs keep up a spirit of 
enterprize in the army and preserve the vigour of the 
troops ; for they impress the idea of our spirit and power, 
and that a mere casualty which no human wisdom could 
forsee was the only cause of disappointment, which cir- 
cumstance will not often happen. If General M c Dougall 
had succeeded in cutting off that detachment of the 
British army, as undoubtedly he would if no intelligence 
had been given them, General Howe would have been re- 
duced to the inevitable necessity of retreating to his 
ships and reimbarking. 

As I am happy in believing the day is coming when 
we shall triumph over the unfeeling murderers of our 
country, I wait with more patience for its arrival. 

On the same day the enterprize I have been relating 
was to have been executed the enemy attempted to take 
Fort Mercer (one of the fortresses that commands the 
River Delaware below the city) by storm. Count Donop, 
with about fifteen hundred foreign troops, was to have 
the honor of this enterprize ; he advanced near to the 
fort, and sent in a summons to the commanding officer 
(Col. Greene, of Rhode Island, who had about four hun- 
dred men in the garrison) to surrender, which being 
answered with proper spirit, Count Donop immediately 
attempted the fort by storm, but was repulsed with the 
loss of about five hundred men, killed and wounded. 
Himself, with many other officers, was left wounded on 
the field, and is since dead. Our loss was very small, 

1777.] JOSEPH WAED. 413 

said to be twenty or thirty. Upwards of three hundred 
stand of arms, many swords and other accoutrements 
were left on the field and fell into our hands. 

To facilitate Count Donop's operations several men-of- 
war came up the river, and cannonaded the fort ; the fire 
was returned with great spirit from the fort in consort 
with our row gallies ; by some means, at present not 
fully ascertained, the Augusta man-of-war, of 64 guns, 
took fire, and after burning some time blew up; the 
other ships were obliged to sheer off, and in going down 
a frigate got aground and the enemy burnt her to prevent 
her falling into our hands. Thus ended this memorable 
day, the events of which strengthen my hopes that we 
shall keep the command of the river, which must greatly 
embarrass the enemy, and render their situation critical 
and precarious. If General Howe finds it impracticable 
to reduce our forts, I think it is probable he may evacuate 
Philadelphia and return to New York ; if he continues, 
it is most certainly the duty and interest of America to 
reduce him at all hazards, as his fall would be an event 
the most likely to insure peace. If the people who in- 
habit the country that surrounds Philadelphia were 
equally spirited and warlike with those in the Eastern 
States, General Howe's retreat might be effectually cut 
off, and all his supplies, and he in a short time reduced 
to the inevitable necessity of surrendering, but the fact is 
quite otherwise. 

Large reinforcements from the Northern Army are ex- 
pected in a few days ; I expect some important operations 
will soon take place after their arrival. 

Small parties of our horse and light infantry are con- 
stantly round the enemy's lines, and frequently make 
prisoners of their patrolls. The ninth instant a party of 
our horse surrounded a patroll near their lines, consisting 
of seven grenadiers and seven light horse and made them 
prisoners. The next day our light horse attacked a party 


of theirs, killed their commanding officer, and drove his 
party back to their lines. In such encounters our troops 
are general successful. The spirit of the enemy seems 
much lowered since the battle of Germantown and their 
defeat at the late attack on the fort. I wish it may be a 
prelude to M r Howe's sharing in the laurels of Burgoyne. 
I have the honour to be. Sir, 

Your most obedient, humble servant. 

Joseph Ward. 

Hon ble James Bowdoin Esq r . 


Albemarle Street, April 20, 78. 

Dear Sir, — Permitt me to trouble you with the en- 
closed letters for my friends M r Bowdoin & D r Cooper.* 
I would neither risque myself in sending them nor you in 
carrying them until 1 I had sent them to Lord North for 
his inspection & permission for them to pass. His answer 
so farr as respects y e letters I here copy & send you. 

"Bushy Park, April 20, 1778. 

" I am extreamly sorry that you wish to send such let- 
ters to America, & should be glad to hear that you have 
changed your resolution, but if you are very desirous of 
sending them I will not throw any obstacle in your way on 
the part of government, & consent that M r Temple may 
carry them to their destination. I hope, however, that M r 
Temple & every body elss will consider me as no party to 
the contents, which I certainly disapprove. The consent 
which I give is only because I wish to accommodate you 
whenever it is in my power." 

This consent I hope will prove mine & your passport 
for these letters. I wish you & M rs Temple an easy & 

* Gov. Pownnll's letter to Mr. Bowdoin here referred to is printed in Proceedings, 
vol. v. pp. 240, 241. — Eds. 

1778.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 415 

safe voyage, a fortunate land-fall, & a happy sight of all 
your friends. My attentions to your son at Richmond 
shall not be those of compliment but real. I am, Sir, 
Y r most obed. humble ser*. 



Boston, April 23, 1778. 
To His Exc y Gen l Washington. 

Sir, — M r Rob* Temple, # at whose request this is writ- 
ten, waits on your Exc y to procure the favour of your 
assistance in the settlement of his account against the 
United States. He would be glad also to' be favoured with 
your permission to go to Ireland, where he has friends & 
connections, and where he can employ himself to the ad- 
vantage of his family in the farming way. He found his 
farm at Charlestown in so ruined a state, that it will re- 
quire a great length of time, and great expence upon it to 
put it in a condition to answer the purpose of supporting 
his family ; and it would be again, if the enemy should 
attack Boston, so much in the centre of military opera- 
tions, that he would have reason to expect that all his 
expence upon it would be lost. He is desirous therefore 
of going to Ireland with his family, where he tells me he 
can procure accommodations for them on one of the sev- 
eral farms, of which he had the offer of leases on advan- 
tageous terms, when last there. 

I give your Exc y joy on y e good news from France, & 
y e effect it appears to have had on y e British ministry. 
Wishing most ardently that y r operations in the ensuing 
campaign may be crowned with success, I have the honor 
to be with y e most perfect esteem, Sir, 

Your Excy's most obed. hble serv* 

* See note, ante, p. 36. — Eds. 



London, l 8t May, 1778. 

Sir. — I find it will be so very inconvenient to my affairs 
to pay respects to you at Portsmouth, that I am obliged to 
take this method of informing you that you are to expect 
from your countrymen in France every possible obstruction 
to prevent your accomplishing your undertaking. These 
gentlemen have an obvious interest, on account of their 
own particular importance, to prevent any fair agreement, 
— one of them besides retains to this hour the strongest 
personal resentment of the treatment which some years 
ago he very improperly received at the Council Board, on a 
noted occasion, and as a proof of this I am asured by un- 
doubted authority that on the day he signed the late treaty 
with France, on the 6 Feb ry , he took care to dress himself 
in the same coat which he had wore when maletreated at 
the Privy Council, t This is so marked a circumstance that 
it affords a very obvious key to his conduct & must natu- 
rally induce your friends to lay out of the scale in this case 
that weight which they might otherwise incline to give to 
his opinions & advice, and must, I think, incline them to 
judge for themselves with coolness & impartiality of the 
terms now proposed by considering the real nature & im- 
portance of these terms, & not merely the opinions of other 
persons concerning them. 

It has no doubt occurred to you that the conduct of 
France with respect to America has been entirely regulated 
by her own interest, & not by any wish for the interest of 

* Sir William Johnstone, 5th baronet of Westerhall, took the name of Pulteney on his 
marriage to the heiress of that family, and was at one time reputed the richest commoner 
in Great Britain. He owned a large landed property in America, represented Shrewsbury 
in the House of Commons in seven successive Parliaments, and died in London, May 29, 
180."). See Burke's Peerage and Baronetage. — Ens. 

t It was long supposed that a suit of clothes, once belonging to Dr. Franklin, which was 
given to the Historical Society in 1803, and is now in its Cabinet, is the identical suit here 
referred to; but this belief does not seem to be warranted by the known facts. See Pro- 
ceedings, vol. i. p. 155; vol. xvi. pp. 50, 370.— Eds. 


America. The dates of the late transactions at Paris are 
a proof of this. No advances were made by France 
towards a treaty with America till after Lord North had 
given notice in Parliament before Xmas, of his intention 
to offer conciliatory propositions. France took the alarm, 
& finding it necessary to abandon her policy of weakening 
both England & America, she signifyed to the American 
deputys that the Court of France would be ready to receive 
proposals for a treaty. The proposals were accordingly 
given in about the end of December, but the French min- 
isters gave no answer till they knew from England, in 
the end of January, the nature of the intended proposals 
of Lord North, & foresaw that America must naturally be 
satisfyed with them. Then it was that France became 
serious in wishing to link America to herself, & the treaty 
was signed on the 6 th of Feb ry . France now finds it neces- 
sary to act openly & with vigor, which America must see 
proceeds from an apprehension that the terms offered by 
Great Britain are so extremely favourable & advantageous 
that America, if left to herself, must necessarily accept of 
them. The power of France which slept whilst Britain 
was hostile to America is called forth with the utmost 
vigor when affection to America resumes its place in the 
parent state. Can America be so blind as to fall into such 
a palpable snare ? 

I cannot believe that any American in whom personal 
& selfish motives have not extinguished or overpowered all 
virtuous love for the public can wish in the moment of 
returning affection to lay Great Britain at the feet of 
France & Spain, or can conceive that the degradation 
of their brethren here would tend to. the permanent in- 
terest of America or of Europe. I am, Sir, 

Your most obedient & most humble servant. 

William Pulteney. 




Golden Square, London, May 16, 1778. 

Dear Sir, — Your letter surprized me much yesterday. 
I thought you had been sailed many weeks for America. 
Our friend Franklin at Paris was very well a few days ago. 
I delivered your message to him which he received very 
kindly, and enquired much after you. I believe now that 
America is in port, " he ivill readily lend an helping hand to 
the general restoration of peace." I have endeavoured since 
my return to convince the Ministry that it is folly not to 
declare the independence of America without delay ; and 
that any delay upon that subject will be fatal as cement- 
ing the recent union between France and America. I 
shall wait the event of some remonstrances that I have 
made on that head, and if they do not produce the desired 
effect, I think I shall take some opportunity to lay my 
sentiments on this subject before Parliament. Enclosed 
I send you some heads of negotiation which I gave in to 
administration as the result of what I sh d presume to ad- 
vise upon the subject. I sh d be glad to have your opinion 
of them if this sh d still find you at Portsmouth, but for 
the sake of peace I wish you were where your interest 
would have the most weight to produce it. Say for me 
on the other side of the great water, that I am a friend 
to peace and to the rights of mankind. I am, dear Sir, 

Your most obliged friend and most obedient servant. 

D. Hartley. 

JonN Temple, Esq r . 

* David Hartley, the friend* and correspondent of Dr. Franklin, and one of the negotia- 
tors of the treaty of peace with the revolted Colonies, was horn in 1732. educated at Oxford, 
and died at Bath, England, Dec. 19, 1813. See Dictionary of National Biography, vol. 
xxv. pp. 1)8, r,!). —Ens. 

t This letter and the letter immediately following it are printed from copies, on a single 
letter sheet, in the handwriting of John Temple. To the first is prefixed the following 
memorandum in the same hand : " Copy of a Letter from David Hartley, Esq 1 ", memher of 
Parliament, to Mr. Temple at Portsm", waiting an opportunity to embark with his famih r 
for America." — Eds. 

1778.] DAVID HARTLEY. 419 


1. That America be declared independent. 

2. That Great Britain and America shall engage 
mutually not to enter into any treaty offensive to 
each other. 

3. That an open & free trade shall be established 
between Great Britain & North America. 

4. That a foederal alliance shall be negotiated between 
Great Britain & North America by persons authorized for 
that purpose to treat with the Congress in America. 


Golden Square, May 22 d , 78. 

Dear Sir, — Yours received. I sh d thank you much 
for your opinion upon the Heads of Negotiation as soon as 
convenient, because I shall have occasion to speak upon the 
American subject on Wednesday next. The precise ques- 
tion for Wednesday is not settled, but in effect it will be 
upon the terms of settling the dispute in the present state 
of it. I am sorry that you meet with any difficulties 
about your passage.* If you wish for any introduction 
to Admiral Keppel on that score, M r Walter is very well 
acquainted with him, having travelled round the world 
with him. No certain news of the Toulon fleet here. 
Nor indeed, any other news. 

Yours, in haste, &c* 

D. Hartley. 

To John Temple, Esq r . 

* By a letter from Thomas de Grey (afterward Lord Walsingham) dated May 22, it 
appears that it was intended Mr. Temple should take passage in one of the government 
vessels, but that difficult}* arose on account of the large quantity of baggage which he had. 
By a subsequent letter (May 27) it seems that the plan was changed, and that he was to 
sail in the regular packet for New York. — Eds. 



London, 22 May, 1778. 

Sir, — I am favoured with both your letters, and have 
said what I thought upon the subject, without any reserve ; 
what effect it will have I know not. 

I return you M r H's letter. His sentiments & mine 
differ widely upon the subject. What he means by lend- 
ing a helping hand to the restoration of peace is procuring 
peace from France & Spain by giving up America, which 
I trust in God there is no man of the least spirit in Eng- 
land will consent to. I have some stake in the business, 
but I would sooner sacrifice the whole than submit to so 
ignominious a peace. If this country is willing to have 
peace on such terms, it stands in need of no helping hand 
to acquire it, but after such meanness it is not likely to 
enjoy peace long, & it is much better to meet the contest 
now like men & die with swords in our hands. That sort 
of peace would not be for the real interest of America. 
If you agree in opinion with Mr. H., you had much better 
decline the business you have undertaken. 

When you see my brother* be so good as to tell him 
that I have added to the 5 th edition of my pamphlet D r 
Franklyn's letter to a friend of mine which I gave him, 
& his letter to the East India Directors concerning the tea 
duty. I am, Sir, 

Your most obed. servt. 

William Pulteney. 

If you should not go by the Lioness, w r ould it not be 
best to go by the packet which will sail the begining of 
next month. 

* Commodore George Johnstone, M. P., and at one time Governor of West Florida, one 
of the Commissioners sent over in 1778 to treat with the Colonies. He was a son of Sir 
.lames Johnstone, of Westerhall, and was born in 1730, and died May 24, 1787. See 
Dictionary of National Biography, vol. xxx. pp. 75-77. — Eds. 

1778.] PEREZ MORTON 421 


Portsmouth, Rhode Island, Aug* 20 th , 1778, 7 o'clo. p. m. 

Dear Sir, — We have just received intelligence that 
the French fleet is coming into the harbour, & I have had 
the pleasure to gratify myself with the agreable sight 
from a neighbouring eminence. But whilst we were there 
Gen 1 Sullivan received a letter from the Count, informing 
him that by the severity of the late storm the Admiral's 
ship, the Languedoc, lost her topmasts, and another lost 
her foretopmast, & a third has not yet joined the fleet 
since their separation, that he had taken the Senegal, 
British frigate, of 28 guns, and a bomb ship. But that 
he had received so much injury from the storm he 
must be obliged to go to Boston to refit his fleet, A 
Council of War is this moment called, I imagine, to con- 
sult the expediency of requesting the Count to use every 
effort in his power to come immediately into this harbour 
& strike the decisive blow. God grant he may be pre- 
vailed on so to do ; for if he should refuse I 'm too much 
afraid from the propensity of our militia to go home, an 
end will be put to the expedition, and the siege be dis- 
honorably raised. But should the Count be willing to 
co-operate with us with the force he has, I make no doubt 
the enemy will be entirely in our hands in the course of 3 
or 4 days. Should I survive the attack you may expect 
a letter from me on Tuesday next, dated at Newport. 
There has been a heavy and constant cannonade kept up 
for these two days pass'd from the enemy's redoubts under 
Tammany Hill upon our guards & fatigue parties. We 
have so far compleated one of the grand batteries as to be 
able to open four guns upon them. This has occasioned 

* Perez Morton, some time Attorney-General of Massachusetts, was born in Boston, 
Nov. 2, 1751, graduated at Harvard College in 1771, married Sarah Wentworth Apthorp, 
and died at Dorchester Oct. 14, 1837. — Eds. 


a severe return from us, & through the course of this day 
has provoked a more vigorous cannonade from the enemy, 
which, however, has had no other effect than the killing 
one of our militia men & wounding several others. I am, 
with much esteem, 

Your very hu 1 seiV. 

Perez Morton. 

P. S. I beg you'd favour me with a line or two daily, 
as the post are very regular. 

James Bowdoin. J r , Esq e . 


Camp before Newport, Aug 1 25 th , 78, 7 o'clo. morning. 

Dear Sir, — Last evening Gen 1 Sullivan rec d a letter in 
two clays from Gen 1 Washington, advising him that there 
were 150 sail of transports in the Sound with their sails 
unbent & ready to put to sea, & recommending him to 
secure a retreat. This intelligence quicken'd the deci- 
sions of our Council of War, and the last evening they 
unanimously agreed to retreat to the north end of the 
island, and there fortify & maintain. We are this mo- 
ment therefore packing up our alls for the movement ; 
we were busy all last night in removing back our heavy 
artillery, and a thousand men were detached to Butt's 
Hill in our rear to throw up the necessary works. I am 
really much pleased to find that Gen 1 Washington has so 
explicitly recommended a retreat, for our commander in 
chief here certainly deserves the countenance of every good 
& great man of his country for his conduct in this expedi- 
tion. And should he conduct our retreat with as much 
skill & address as he has led us on into the muns of the 
enemy he will because he ought to be crowned with laurels. 
The Marquiss De la Fayette (a gentleman whose spirit 

1778.] SAMUEL ADAMS. 423 

sufficiently evinces the noble source from whence he 
sprung) is so peculiarly disgusted at the very extraor- 
dinary conduct of Count D'Estaing that he is determined 
to lay by his sword & his commission till they or some 
other fleet of his Most Christian Majesty has struck a 
stroke in favour of America that shall wipe off any evil 
impressions against his country which the Count's conduct 
may have made on the minds of the people here, and will 
reflect honor on the French arms. The Marquiss is a truly 
amiable character, &, to give it to you in short, he is 3 
quarters an American. He purposes to reside at Boston, 
& is to accompany our noble General. (Sub rosa, one of 
our gen 1 officers in the course of the debates in Council 
took occasion from the Count's conduct to reflect on the 
nation at large. The Marquiss was very particular in 
enquiring his name, family, & rank, & determines to call 
him to an account for it. Let no one see or read this 
paragraph. ) 

In haste. I have nothing further to add, but that I 
am, with much esteem & respect, 

Your friend & hu 1 serv fc . 

Perez Morton. 

James Bowdoin, J b , Esq b . 


Dear Sir, — A few days ago I receivd a letter from 
your son in law M r Temple dated New York, August 23 d , 
requesting me by the first opportunity to inform you of 
his & M rs Temple's arrival there, & that, for particular 
reasons he should be exceedingly happy if your affairs 
would permit you to meet them at Philadelphia, or as 
near it as might be convenient to you. He requested this 
of me, because excepting that letter & another to M r 
President Laurens, he had not written a line since his 


arrival at N. Y., & he had still weighty reasons for declin- 
ing it. He also desired me to cause it to be made as 
convenient as might be (at his expence) for M rs Temple 
& her little boy, who had not been well since their arrival, 
to get to Philadelphia. His baggage which is both heavy 
& bulkey, he intended to get transported in a Flag, if any 
should be suffered to pass, to Boston, or some port as near 
it as might be, & hoped to see me soon in this city. His 
letter to the President was read in Congress. It was short 
and contained little more than to sollicit leave to come to 
Philad a to pay his respects to Congress. This was refus'd 
upon the idea that he might be a secret emissary from the 
British Court. I think it is best for him that his request 
is not granted 5 for the jealousy of the people at large 
would, I believe, render his residence here very uncom- 
fortable. A certain Doctor Burkenhout, who came from 

London in the same packett with M r T , is now in 

prison in this city, committed by the authority of this 
State, under the same suspicion.* I took occasion to in- 
form Congress from my own knowledge of M r Temple, that 
although he had been formerly an officer of the Crown of 
Great Britain, and in the Customs, yet he had constantly 
given great offence to his brother Commissioners & other 
friends of that government, particularly Bernard & 
Hutchinson, by his attachment to those who espoused the 
liberties of America ; that he went to England seven 
years ago, where, I understood, he had since lived the 
greater part of the time, entirely out of favor at Court & 
in private life ; and that I had reason to think his connex- 
ions in Boston had long expected his return to spend his 
days there. Congress afterwards orderd the Secretary 
to inform M r Temple, that if it was his intention to reside 

* Anions the Bowdoin and Temple family papers separately filed is a letter from 
Helena Berkenhaupt to Mrs. John Temple, dated Richmond, June 9, 1778, in which the 
writer alludes to her'hushand's ahsence, and mentions many mutual friends, among others 
Gov. Pownall, a letter from whom to James Bowdoin, relative to an idea of returning to 
America, dated April 19, 1778, is printed in Proceedings, vol. v. pp. 240, 241. — Eds. 

1778.] JAMES BOWDCOT. 425 

in any one of the United States, the same should be signi- 
fied by him to the State in which he intends to reside, & 
the approbation of that State obtaind before a passport 
could be granted to him. Thus the matter stands in all 
its particulars, a view of which I thought it proper you 
should be acquainted with. I wish M r Temple had turned 
his attention first to Boston. It is probable he will now 
do it, and that you will soon receive a letter from him. 
I am with the greatest sincerity, 

Your affectionate friend, and humble servant, 

S. Adams. 

Philadelphia, Sept 1 3, 1778. 

Hon. James Bowdoin Esq e . 


Middlebo, Sept. 21, 1778. 

Sir, — I thank you for y r kind letter of y e 3 d instant (w ch 
I have just rec d ) and for the information contained in it 
with respect to M r Temple & his family. It gave me the 
first authentic acc° of their arrival at New York. I observe 
it is his desire if my affairs would permit, that I would 
meet them at Phil a , but this is not in my power to do, as 
my old disorder still hangs upon me, of which since I had 
y e pleasure of seeing you last at Boston, I have had a very 
severe fit. It is certainly wise in Congress to be cautious 
how they admit strangers into any of the United States, 
especially as it is manifest there are emissaries from y e 
British ministry employed to corrupt the virtue of Ameri- 
cans ; but by an indiscriminate refusal of all applications 
for leave to visit Phil a in particular, do they not cut them- 
selves off from a probable means of obtaining much valu- 
able information ? Your letter mentions that M r Temple's 
application was refused upon y e idea that he might be a 
secret emissary from y e British Court. In what capacity 


he is come to America I do not know ; but I should sup- 
pose in a private one, & that he has brought his family to 
settle here. But on y e supposition he is in the employ of 
y e Ministry, if I know him, he would act on y e principles 
of honour. If he could be instrumental consistently with 
those principles to bring about a reconciliation, he would 
doubtless be glad to have an opportunity for it ; and as I 
think he w d act an open, candid part, a meer conversation 
with him by some of y e members of Congress in their pri- 
vate capacity might be productive of some good, & pos- 
sibly bring on a treaty, w ch might end in a solid peace, 
founded on the independence of America, and the mutual 
interests of both countries. From some things dropt in 
the debates in Parliament, particularly in y e House of 
Lords, lately published, and by Mauduit's piece circulated 
over England & transmitted hither by Mr. A. Lee, it ap- 
pears probable, that y e British Ministry are inclinable to 
admit y e independence of America, and therefore there is 
reason to apprehend that such a conversation might have 
a salutary effect. But if M r Temple be meerly a private 
person, he may be able to give, & in that case w d be under 
no restraint from giving, any information that might be 
useful to the United States. In either case his going to 
Phil d would be beneficial. If this however sh d be appre- 
hended by y e enemy in the latter case, or they sh d get 
y e knowledge that Congress by granting him liberty to 
visit Phil a expected such information from him, it would 
doubtless occasion a stoppage to his going thither ; and 
possibly be y e means of putting him into a disagreeable 
situation. If therefore on further consideration, Congress 
sh d think proper to grant that liberty, you will see the 
fitness of its being done in such a manner as will not raise 
any suspicions of him* I beg y e fav r that when you 

* In the " History of New York during the Revolutionary War," by Judge Thomas 
Jones, a Loyalist refugee, is a bitter attack on John Temple, representing him to have 
come to America at this time as a secret emissary of the British Ministry, while at heart a 

1778.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 427 

write to him, you will mention mine & M rs Bowdoin's 
sincerest and most affectionate regards to him & our dear 
daughter & children, & that we hope soon to have the 
pleasure of seeing them. Whether it will be in Boston (to 
which we were about removing) or in the country I cannot 
tell, as there has been for some days a general expectation 
at Boston of an attack on that town to be made by the 
enemy very soon with their whole force both by sea & 
land. Count D'Estaing's squadron there is doubtless y e 
motive to it & principal object of y e attack. The failure 
of y e R d Isl d expedition has been productive of very ill 
consequences & may be of more ; but whether it be a real 
misfortune time must discover. If it should encourage 
y e enemy to attempt to penetrate by y e way of Provi- 
dence through y e country to Boston, it may issue in a 
catastrophe similar to that which attended their army 
under Gen 1 Burgoyne. Such be y e issue, in whatever way 
y e attempt be made ! In this wish I am sure of your 
concurrence, and am with real esteem, d r S r , 
Y r most obed. hble. serv*. 


Boston, Nov r 7, 1778. 
To His Exc t Gen l Washington. 

Sir, — I thank y r Exc y for y e letter you caused to be 
sent to me some time ago. As it came from England I 
think it proper to mention to you, that it was from M r 

sympathizer with the Revolutionary party. It is also stated that, two years before, one of 
Temple's brothers came from England, bringing concealed in the buttons of his coat letters 
to the Continental Congress from the Marquis of Rockingham, the Duke of Richmond, Lord 
Shelburne, Gen. Conway, Charles James Fox, and David Hartley ! The charge that 
Temple was in 1778 a secret agent of the British government " to bring about a reconcilia- 
tion between Great Britain and her Colonies," is also in the London " Political Magazine" 
for November, 1780. The preceding number of the same periodical describes Benjamin 
Franklin as "alike a hypocrite in politics and in science." In Force's American Archives, 
fourth series, vol. v. col. 409, is a letter dated Philadelphia, March 19, 1776, which states 
that the only letter contained in the buttons of William Temple's coat was one from 
Arthur Lee. — Eds. 


Stewart who married M rs Bowdoin's sister, and beside fam- 
ily matters contains nothing but a wish for the re-estab- 
lishment of peace between Britain & America. 

The gentleman who waits on you with this letter is 
John Temple, Esq', lately returned from England, where 
he has resided the last eight years. He held at different 
times several respectable & lucrative offices under y e 
Crown ; as those of Surveyor Gen f & one of y e Com' 8 
of y e Customs in America, & Survey' Gen 1 of y e Cus- 
toms in England: the first with a salary of £500 & 
y e last of £1000 sterl g p r an. Of these offices he was 
successively deprived for his refusal to join in y e in- 
famous measures for oppressing the trade & liberties of 
America ; and the last four years his continuance in Eng- 
land was y e effect of ministerial persecution, from which 
he was released by the mediation of the late Earl of Chat- 
ham and other friends in y e minority. As he intends in 
his way to Congress to pay his compliments to your Exc y , 
I beg leave to introduce him to you for that purpose ; and 
to mention him as a warm, steadfast, persecuted friend to 
the cause of America, whose merits in that view intitle 
him to the friendly notice of his countrymen. If y r Exc y 
should view him in that light, you will permit me to 
think it w d gratify your benevolence to favour him with 
a line of recommendation to Congress, which at the same 
time I sh d esteem a particular favour. I have y e honour 
to be with great respect, S r , 

Y' Exc y ' s most ob fc hble. serv\ 


Boston, Nov. 7, 1778. 

Dear Sir, — I had the pleasure of writing to you the 
21 8t Sept', soon after which M r Temple with his family ar- 

* For a correspondence between James Bowdoin and Samuel Adams in the summer of 
1780, see Proceedings, vol. xii. pp. 229, 230. — Eds. 

1778.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 429 

rived here in good health. He was received with y e 
utmost cordiality and friendship ; such as were due to a 
man, who had given the fullest evidence of a firm and 
undeviating attachment to the rights and liberties of his 
country. It is needless, as you are so well acquainted 
with M r Temple's political history, to give you a minute 
detail of the base treatment he has received from the 
British Ministry. I shall therefore only mention that 
after his last dismission from office (w ch was that of Sur- 
veyor General of y e Customs in England, with a salary 
of £1000 st g per annum) he was called upon to settle the 
office accounts, which had been setled twelve years be- 
fore, while he held y e office of Surveyor General in 
America ; and this was done for the purpose of harrassing 
him, & preventing his return to America. Being at great 
expence, he was solicitous to get his family here, but all 
his applications for liberty to come with them were in- 
effectual, till by the influence of the late Earl of Chatham 
he obtained it. Now he has got them safe here, it is his 
wish to be made serviceable to his country either here or 
in Europe. In what way he can be so, you can best judge. 
If it should be thought adviseable that he should return 
to England on the idea of his being serviceable there, he 
might at the same time, in case of a change of ministry, 
have a probable chance of obtaining some compensation 
for the losses & disappointment he has suffered under the 
present administration. You will permit me to say that 
I conscientiously think his conduct to this moment 
intitles him to y e good wishes & assistance of his coun- 
trymen to procure him that compensation. 

What I mean by his being serviceable in England is, 
that if he should go thither, he would in that case have 
an opportunity of representing the state of things here in 
a proper light ; w ch would be very different from that 
in which it probably has been & may be represented by 
letters sent to England, and by persons gone, and going 


thither, from the enemy. If they should represent what 
in substance has been represented in some of the New 
York news papers, that the people of America in general 
are tired of the war ; that they disapprove of Congress's 
rejecting the proposals of the British Coinissioners ; 
that from the increasing quantity and depreciation of our 
paper bills, the credit of them must be soon at an end ; 
and that when this shall happen, we shall be destitute of 
means of continuing the war ; and if by such an untrue 
representation, y e British Ministry should persevere in 
carrying on the war, which otherwise they might be in- 
duced to bring to a speedy issue by confirming, though 
reluctantly, American independence, it would be doing 
an essential service to both countries to counterwork the 
influence of such a representation. It is our business, 
however, to attend to our own interest, and this would be 
more effectually promoted if it should happen to coincide 
with that of y e enemy, w ch in the affair of peace it 
might be made to do, provided that peace be setled so 
as to secure our independence and be not inconsistent 
with the late treaty with France. With respect to Bri- 
tain y e state of her finances & other circumstances must 
make it ineligible for her to continue the war with Amer- 
ica, and much more so to involve herself in an European 
war, w ch would probably be y e consequence of that continu- 
ance. To prevent then their continuing the war by means 
of the influence of misrepresentation and falsehood, would 
it not be an happy circumstance if a proper person could, 
as soon as might be, proceed from hence to England to 
rectify the misconceptions of the governing people there 
& give them a right idea of things? — a person of good 
sense, tried integrity, known good will to the American 
cause, acquainted from personal knowledge with the 
state of things here, and able to gain access to men of in- 
fluence in England. It might be productive of happy 
circumstances if such a person could be found. Your 

1778.] JAMES GAMBIER. 431 

knowledge of mankind and of M r Temple in particular 
enables you to determine, whether he be such an one ; and 
whether his being in England at y e time of the ap- 
proaching session of Parliament might not be of advan- 
tage to the American cause. If I did not think so, I 
should not intimate such a thing to you. But how- 
ever that may be, I have no reason to doubt your knowl- 
edge of his character will procure him the happiness of 
your friendship. 

I am with great esteem, d r Sir, 


New York, 7 Deer, 1778. 

Sir, — Your letter brings my remembrance many happy 
hours I spent during my comand at Boston, when pleasd 
with your acquaintance. Painfull, very so, the idea of 
what is now the reverse in the present state of affairs in 
this distressd, distracted country ! shocking the reflection 
to a benevolent, religious mind. Alas ! Forthwith will I 
give orders for the liberating the young man you wish to 
be restord to his connections. Woud I could be any way 
instrumental to the restoration of happiness to this con- 
tinent ! The same principles of humanity that governd 
my conduct when I had the honor to comand formerly 
in North America will continue ever to actuate me to 
every act of humanity and benevolence, all in my poor, 
circumscribd power. Life is short and we have a much 
more important object in contemplation beyond the tran- 
sitory moment here. 

Some little oportunities have offerd since I have been 
in this comand where I coud shew comisseration & pity 
to suffering fellow creatures, & I have selfishly availd my- 
self of them to releive the miseries of captivity. A self- 


approving conscience has been a sufficient reward. I have 
likewise on several occasions given liberty to numbers of 
prisoners beyond the common rules & regulations literally 
prescribed, in the idea that an example of charity & hu- 
manity woud be followd by liberal minds, & have to hope 
that on the present occasion, in the loss of the Somersett, 
her captain, Carry, & officers will receive that compassion 
and indulgence I have both felt and enforc'd in every 
instance in my power to alleviate the sufferings of indi- 
viduals in this most unnatural and distressing contest. I 
have no doubt but the comanding officer at Boston will 
take the earliest means of sending Captain Curry, his crew 
& officers, and what Brittish seamen may be there to me 
here, and by the shortest route to New London as the 
winter season is set in, from compassionate considera- 
tions. Permit me to tender my cordial best wishes to 
M rs Bowdoin & Temple for their happiness. I am, Sir, 
Your faithfull humble servant, 

J. Gambier. 

Comander in Chief of all his Britan Maj. 
\ ships st d in North America. 

James Bowdoin, Esq* 


Boston, 7 May, 1779. 

Dear Sir, — I fully intended myself the pleasure of 

visiting you before I sh d leave America, but so good an 

opportunity as that of the brig e Amsterdam, a vessell of 

force, offering for Holland, I have concluded to take pas- 

* Horatio Gates was born in Maiden, England, in 1728, and served for several years in 
the British army in America. After the peace with France in 17G3, he bought an estate in 
Virginia; and on the breaking out of the Revolution he offered his services to Congress. 
In 1777 he superseded Schuyler in command of the Northern Army, and was the victor 
at Saratoga. Subsequently he retired from active service; but in 1780 he was appointed 
to the command of the army in North Carolina, and in August of that year was totally de- 
feated at Camden. He died in New York, April 10, 1806. See Appleton's Cyclopaedia of 
American Biography, vol. ii. pp. 614, 615. — Eds. 

1779.] JOHN TEMPLE. 433 

sage in her & expect to sail in eight or ten days at farthest. 
Sh d you have any commands you may depend upon my par- 
ticular care & attention. Upon my arrival in Holland I 
shall, before I go to England, proceed to the German Spaa, 
where there will be many gentlemen from England of the 
first rank and consideration of that kingdom, both in & 
out of the ministry ; particularly the Duke of Richmond 
& my Lord Camden, I have good reason to expect will be 
there, and as far as my voice can go, I shall everywhere set 
forth the total impracticability of Great Britain's effecting 
anything more than her own further distress, if not ruin, 
by continuing the war against this country ; and I think 
I can substantially support such my opinion from the per- 
sonal observation I have made for now near a year that 
I have been upon the continent, having conversed freely 
with gentlemen of the first rank & character in these States, 
as well as with many of their deligates in Congress ; and I 
am perfectly sensible that Britain has nothing else to do, 
but with the best grace she can, offer her hand to Amer- 
ica upon the very terms that America herself has proposed, 
& from which she never ivill recede. Great Britain, in my 
opinion, hath not an alternative except that of " dying in 
the last ditch," an exit which, however agreeable to Gov- 
ernor Johnstone's turn of mind, the nation in general, I 
am satisfied, are not much inclined to, though the sooner 
the governing powers of the kingdom make up their minds 
upon a true & faithfull state of affairs in this country, for 
they have been deceived long enough, the sooner they will 
be able to turn their thoughts to the saving the nation as 
far as now may be from irrecoverable ruin. Your senti- 
ments, if I judge right, are nearly the same as these, and 
I doubt not your letters (simeler to that you formerly 
wrote to Lord Thanet, & which was read in the House of 
Lords) will freely express these sentiments, & may con- 
tribute much to induce that infatuated country to put an 
immediate end to so ruinous a war. 



That independence & happiness may attend these 
united States, and that you may meet with the respect 
and gratitude of a triumphant, flourishing country is 
the sincere wish of, my dear Sir, 

Your most obed fc faithfull servant. 

J, Temple. 

Major General Gates, at Providence. 


Whereas certain letters written by Governour Hutchin- 
son, L* Gov r Oliver and others were transmitted by Doctor 
Franklin to the Hon ble Thomas dishing, Esq*, to be by 
him communicated to the Hon ble Mess rs Bowdoin, Pitts, 
and Winthrop of the Council, and M r S. Adams of the 
House of Representatives, to the Reverend Doctors 
Chauncy and Cooper of Boston, and others, under ex- 
press limitations and restrictions ; the intention of send- 
ing which letters was that clear and undoubted evidence 
might be lodged in America of the perfidious and traiter- 
ous designs of the writers against their country, which 
letters we afterwards were informed by the Hon ble John 
Temple, Esq r , were thro his means procured by D r Franklin, 
tho', as he declares, not in the way apprehended by the 
British ministry ; and whereas by the eager desire of 
some who properly came to the knowledge of said let- 
ters to apply them to the important publick use they were 
adapted to serve, the above mentiond limitations and 

* The signatures to this certificate are autographs. The original date was August; but 
May was written over it with a coarse-nibbed pen, and with ink of the same color as that 
used for the rest of the document. There is so much space above the signature of Cushing 
as to suggest that it was expected some one else would sign under Bowdoin. Of the mem- 
bers of the Council named, Mr. Pitts died Feb. 7, 1776, and Mr. Winthrop May 3, 1779. 
For a long letter from James Bowdoin to Thomas Pownall, dated May 7, 1779. in which 
month Temple returned to England, see Proceedings, vol. v. pp. 241-244; and for a de- 
tailed account of Temple's connection with the Hutchinson letters, see a paper communi- 
cated to this Society by his grandson, the Hon. Robert C Winthrop, and printed in the 
Proceedings, vol. xvi. pp. 41-49. — Eds. 


restrictions were transgressed, and the letters made pub- 
lick, the consequence of which was that M r Temple, who had 
uniformly opposed the measures of the British administra- 
tion respecting America, and their tools, became strongly 
suspected by them of having procured and sent said let- 
ters, and was accordingly deprived of the place he held 
under the British government of one thousand pounds 
sterling W annum, as also his office of L* Governour of N. 
Hampshire, and was otherwise for a long course of time 
persecuted and distressed by the vengeance of the British 
ministry even to the risque of his life. Particularly, as 
we are well informed, a JVe Exeat Regnum was issued 
against him, and large securities required of him not to 
depart the kingdom without permission first had of the 
British ministry, which restraint was continued to the 
spring of 1778, when, thro' the mediation of the late Earl 
of Chatham and others, he was allowed to come over to 
New York, and from thence by flag of truce to this his 
native country. 

From all which it must appear, that while M r Temple, 
in being instrumental in sending the above mentioned let- 
ters under such cautions as he thought sufficient for his 
own safety, not only designed, but actually rendered a 
most important benefit to his country by destroying in a 
great measure the influence of those who were planning 
the destruction of its liberties, and by greatly aiding the 
infancy of that opposition which has gradually ripen'd 
into the present glorious revolution, yet that this gen- 
erous service did eventually turn out to his own great 
loss & distress, for which, while the services of many 
others to the American cause, particularly D r Franklin's, 
who had a large share in this hazardous and publick 
spirited measure, have been rewarded with honours 
and emoluments, M r Temple has hitherto received no 

We therefore the subscribers who are particularly 


knowing to the things here recited hold ourselves bound 
to declare that we consider M r Temple, so long as he re- 
tains that fidelity and affection to his country which in 
every instance that has come to our knowledge he has 
hitherto manifested, as having a claim in reason and 
equity to a compensation for his great sufferings in the 
zealous service of it, and to be regarded by it with 
particular gratitude and respect. 

James Bowdoin. 

Thomas Gushing. 

Charles Chauncy. 

Samuel Cooper. 

Sam l Adams. 

Boston, May 21, 1779. 


Head Q rs , Morristown, May 15 th , 1780. 

D B Sir, — I take the liberty to transmit to your care 
a letter for Major General Heath under a flying seal. 
From an apprehension that he might have left Boston be- 
fore it arrived and the importance of the objects to which 
it extends, I am induced to use this freedom. If the Gen- 
eral has not returned to the army, I would request the 
favor of you to have the letter sealed after perusing it, 
and delivered to him ; and if he has, that you will have 
the goodness to consider it as addressed to yourself and 
to assist me in the several interesting points to which it 
goes. It may be of infinite importance to obtain the in- 
formation required, and I should hope it may be done. 
Our very good friends & allies have it much at heart, and 
view the reduction of Hallifax as a matter of great conse- 
quence, as being the arsenal of support to the enemy's 
fleet in those seas & in the West Indies. I very sincerely 
congratulate you on this prospect of succour from his Most 
Christian Majesty, which equally demonstrates his wisdom 


and his great regard for us. Your own good understand- 
ing, I am convinced, will lead you at once to see the pro- 
priety of secrecy upon the occasion, and you will be pleased 
to consider the communication as confidential. I shall be 
happy, and our interest and character as a nation indis- 
pensably require it, that our exertions maybe proportionned 
to this fresh instance of magnanimity and generosity on the 
part of our ally. I confess I have my fears on this head, 
as we have now, from the pernicious system of short inlist- 
ments, nothing left us but the skeleton of an army, and 
are under great embarrassments with respect to our finance. 
Every friend to America should give his most active sup- 
port to these important objects. 

The accounts from Charles Town received on our part, 
as I learn from Philadelphia, only come down to the 15 th 
of April. The enemy's batteries had then been opened 
for some days, without any other effect than killing three 
privates and a woman & child and firing one or two houses. 
It is however reported to-day that they have received ad- 
vice in New York to the l sfc instant, and that matters had 
not then undergone any material changes. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect & re- 
gard, d r Sir, Your most obed fc serv*. 

G° Washington. 

The Hon ble James Bowdoine. 


Head Q rs , Springfield in Jersey, June 14, 1780. 

D R Sir, — I have received your two favors of the 29 th 
& 31 st of last month, with the plan referred to, and have 
to return you my warmest thanks for the same & for your 
very kind & polite attention to my request. The plan & 
table of reference are very intelligible and satisfactory, 
and convey a clear idea of many points about which I was 
uninformed before. These may be of great use, and from 


the manner and the person the accounts were obtained 
with respect to the fortifications, I have no doubt of their 
accuracy as to those at the time to which they relate. 
The place appears to be very strong & to have had much 
attention paid to its security latterly. I am in hopes from 
the measures General Heath has taken that he will be able 
to procure intelligence of its improvements and force to a 
late period. 

With respect to Charles Town, although I have received 
no official advices of it on our part, the loss of it seems 
placed beyond doubt. The articles of capitulation are 
published in a York Gazette Extraordinary by authority, 
which were signed the 12 of May, with all the preliminary 
negotiations between the commanders. The garrison, at 
least the part denominated Continental, are prisoners of 
war. This is a severe blow, but not such as will ruin us, 
if we exert ourselves virtuously and as we are able. Some- 
thing like it seems to have been necessary to rouse us from 
the more than thrice unaccountable state of security in 
which we were sunk. Heaven grant the blow may have 
this effect. If it should the misfortune may prove a benefit 
and the means of saving us. 

On Tuesday night the enemy landed at Elizabeth 
Town point, with all the force they could draw from 
New York & its dependencies, under the command of 
General Knyphausen, and proceeded the next morning 
into the country about seven miles, within half a mile of 
this place. At night they retired to the point of debarka- 
tion, where they have remained ever since. In their ad- 
vance they were most spiritedly opposed by the Jersey 
troops who lay in the neighbourhood, and by such of the 
militia as had an opportunity from their situation and the 
suddenness of the occasion to turn out, and there is reason 
to believe they were a good deal galled. Brigadier Gen 1 
Stirling, it seems from good authority, was wounded in 
the thigh by our picket soon after they debarked. This 

1780.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 439 

movement of the enemy brought the army to this post on 
Wednesday last. The cause which justifies this insulting 
manoeuvre on their part most deeply affects the honor of 
the States, a vindication of which could not be attempted 
in the present situation of the army, without most emi- 
nently hazarding their security, — at least as far as it 
might depend upon the safety of the latter. Such is our 
weak diminished condition. Our character, our interest, 
our all that is dear, demand that the States should with- 
out the least delay fill their battalions according to their 
established complement. If this is not done, we cannot 
co-operate with the force so generously coming from our 
ally on any large scale, and may, however flattering our 
views of success may be thought by many, easily become 
a ruined and an undone people. You cannot, my dear Sir, 
render a more essential service to your country than to 
promote as far as it may be in your power this desirable 
and all interesting work. I have the honor to be, with 
very sincere respect & regard, 

Y r most obed. sv\ 

G° Washington. 

P. S. The enemy burnt a meetinghouse and several 
dwelling houses & barnes. They lost about forty prisoners. 
We have suffered but very inconsiderably in this affair ; 
and I have the pleasure to add that the militia never 
turned out with greater spirit than on this occasion. 
Hon ble James Bowdoin. 


Boston, June 26, 1780. 
His Exc t Gen l Washington, at Springfield H d Q ks , Jersey. 

Dear Sir, — By the post I had y e honour of your letter 
of the 14 th instant, and am happy to find that the plan, 

* For three letters written about this time by Bowdoin to Lafayette, and two letters 
from Lafayette to Bowdoin, see Proceedings, vol. v. pp. 348-355. — Eds. 


&c., accompanying my last was in any degree satisfactory 
and may be of use. I hope the measures taken for pro- 
curing further intelligence will be effectual. The loss of 
Charlestown is unfortunate, and the more so if owing, as 
is said to be y e case, to a want of provisions. I wish it 
may be repaired the present campaign, and that the ex- 
pected forces of our allies, joined with our own, will enable 
your Exc y to do something more than repair it. 

The papers enclosed will shew the measures our Legis- 
lature have taken to answer the requisitions made on 
this State, and your Exc y and the Com tee of Congress 
co-operating with you may be assured that nothing will be 
wanting on the part of the Council of this State to carry 
those measures effectually into execution. You will ob- 
serve by y e resolution of y e 5 th inst 1 that every person pro- 
cured for y e service therein mentioned is to supply himself 
with a good firelock, &c. This clause is vacated by a pos- 
terior resolution (of y e 14 th ), so far as it relates to the fire- 
lock & accoutrements ; and for this reason that y e Court 
apprehended that the arms stopped from our men the 
last winter & spring, when their service expired, would be 
sufficient to supply the men now raising. I hope the 
Court were not mistaken, and that there will be found in y e 
publick stores at head quarters a sufficient number of arms 
for the men. Fervently wishing success to the arms of 
the United States, I have y e hon r to be, with the most 
respectful regard, d r Sir, 

Y r Exc y ' 8 most ob* hble. serv\ J. B. 

Y r Exc y will please to coihunicate the enclosed proceed- 
ings of the Gen 1 Court to v e honble. Com tee of Congress. 
A mem of the papers enclosed to G 1 Washington, viz. 
The resolve of y e 5 th June for raising 3934 men for 6 
do of y e 23 d for raising H of said number, 
do y e 22 d for raising 4726 militia for 3 months. 

1780.] ESTHER REED. 441 

The resolve of y e 14 th & 24 th appointing Com rs to receive 
money f m people as adv a for taxes. 

do y e 14 th excusing the men from furnishing 
themselves with arms. 

do y e 20 th appointing M r Osgood, &c, to super- 
intend purchases, &c. 

do y e 23 d empowering s d Com tee to impress 
cattle, &c. 

do y e 19 th appointing Mess rs Baker & Miller to 
purchase cattle, & rum, &c. 

do y e 24 th empow g M r Osgood, &c, & to displace 
purchasers if necessary. 

do y e 2 3 d do Brigad r Fellows to draw forth 
y e militia of his brigade. 


Madam, — The ladies of this State, aspiring to the 
honour of giving the soldiers of the American army some 
public mark of the esteem they entertain of their pat- 
riotism & valour, have associated to raise a subscription 
as a reward for their hardships & their virtue. Being 
one of the States contiguous to the theatre of war we 
hastened to form the plan, & the success has answered 
our most sanguine expectations. But desirous to make 
the subscription more adequate to the merit & number of 
our brave soldiers, we take the liberty of conveying to 
you, Madam, the inclosed plan which was publish'd in 
our Gazette of last month, not doubting your interest 
& influence to carry it into execution through your State, 
& render it by that means more general, useful, & 

* Wife of Gen. Joseph Reed, President of Pennsylvania. She was the daughter of 
Dennis De Berdt, sometime agent of Massachusetts in England. She died Sept. 18, 1780, 
at the age of thirty-four. (See Reed's Life of Joseph Reed, vol. ii. p. 269.) — Eds. 


M 1 * 3 Washington has laid the plan before the General, 
& we wait his orders how the money is to be disposed of, 
with which we will take an early opportunity to acquaint 
you. The donations of this city amount to 290,000 dol 8 ,* 
& the country will make very considerable additions. 
I am, Madam, with great respect, 

Your very hum. ser*. 

Esther Reed. 

Phila, June 30 th , 1780. 

Since writing the above General Washington has 
expressed his opinion that part of the money will be best 
appropriated to purchase linnen for the army, as the 
soldiers are very destitute of shirts. Blankets also will 
be very acceptable. 


A Newport, le 8 Aoust, 1780. 

Monsieur, — J'aprends par la derniere depesche du 
General Washington, du 4 Aoust, que Monsieur Clinton, 
qui s'etoit embarque a Huntington dans Long Island 
dans le desseiri de venir nous attaquer icy, a fait rentrer 
ses transports dans New York, et paroit avoir renonce a 
ce dessein. J'ai profite de ce dernier avis tout de suitte 
pour engager le General Heath a renvoyer sur le champ 
toutes les milices extraordinaires. Je garde seulement icy 
avec l'agrement de nostre General Washington la partie 
des milices qui doit servir trois mois a son armee pour 

* At this time the continental currency had fallen so low in value, and was depreciating 
so rapidly, that the amount of the donations at the time they were made probably did not 
exceed $5,000 or #6,000 in Spanish milled dollars. — Eds. 

t Jean Haptiste Donatien de Vimeur, Comte de Rochambeau, was born at Vendome July 
1, 1725, and died at Thoro May 10, 1807. He entered the army in 1742, and served in 
many campaigns with much distinction. In 1780 he was made Lieutenant General, and 
sent to America with a considerable body of French troops. He cordially co-operated with 
Washington in the operations which resulted in the surrender of Lord Cornwallis. See 
Nouvelle Uiographie Generale, vol. xlii. — Eds. 



travailler a perfectionner un fort que nous faisons faire a 
Howland's Ferry, qui assurera toujours nostre communi- 
cation avec le continent. 

II me reste a vous remercier, Monsieur, ainsi que nos 
bons allies de l'Etat de Massachuset, de toute l'ardeur et 
de tout le zele avec lequel ils ont quitte leur recolte pour 
accourir icy dans un nombre beaucoup plus considerable 
que celui que nous avions demande. Je dois vous dis- 
tinguer le ministre Peter Thacher de la paroisse de Stili- 
bourough,* qui a amene toute sa paroisse, y compris 3 de 
ses enfants, laissant la moitie de ses recoltes sur pied. Je 
ne doute pas, Monsieur, que leurs courageuse resolution, 
la demarche de l'armee de nostre General Washington, et 
l'ardeur et la gaiete de nos troupes se voyants si bien 
secondees, n'ait fait changer de resolution au General 
Clinton, ce dont nous sommes tous bien faches. 

Vous m'obligerez sensiblement de me faire passer 
promptement tous les avis que vous pourriez recevoir 
de la Seconde Division, en les tenants secrets autant 
qu'il sera possible pour que les messieurs qui croisent 
devant nous avec leurs flotte de guerre n'en aient pas 
d'avis et ne puissent pas l'interpreter. 

J'ai l'honneur d'estre au dela toute expression, Mon- 
sieur, de vostre Excellence, 

Le tres humble et tres obeissant serviteur. 


* Presumably Rev. Peter Thacher, minister of Attleborough. He was born in Middle- 
borough, January 14, 1715, — or January 25, 1716, according to another account, — graduated 
at Harvard College in 1737, ordained at Attleborough in 1748, and died there in Novem- 
ber, 1785, "leaving a large family." See N. E. Hist, and Gen. Register, vol. xiii. p. 246 ; 
xxxvii. pp. 13, 14. The body of the letter is written by an amanuensis in a very legible 
hand, and the name " Stilibourough " is unmistakable; but it was probably copied from 
some muster-roll or other document not easily deciphered by a foreigner. — Eds. 



to y e honble the senate & house of representatives of the 
Commonwealth of Massachusetts: 

Honble Gentlemen, — By your message of yesterday, 
and a letter from the Secretary, I am acquainted that you 
had been pleased to elect me Lieutenant Governour and 
a Senator of this Commonwealth, leaving it optionally 
with me, as I presume, to accept of either. 

I have a due sense of the honour conferred upon me, 
which has excited in me the warmest sentiments of 
respect and gratitude to your honourable body. But it 
is my misfortune, and at this time especially I think it 
a great one, that by reason of a continued ill state of 
health I am under a necessity to decline accepting y e 
offices, both the one and the other, to which by your 
favour I have had the honour to be elected. 

The recent and repeated experience I have had of the 
bad effect of attention to public business has furnished 
me with y e fullest evidence of the unfitness of my en- 
gaging in it, and the duty I owe to the public forbids me 
to engage in it while my health continues in so precarious 
a state. To this I would add, that in case my health had 
been no bar to it I should have been under some difficulty 
about accepting either office, although conferred by so 
respectable a body as the General Court, if there be any 
reason to suppose from the returns of y e votes of the 
several towns that the acceptance would not be approved 
by the good people of the State, whose good will, without 
any regard to their suffrages, it would give me the high- 
est satisfaction to merit. To say so much on a subject 
meerly personal would greatly need an apology at another 
time, but at the present it may be proper, in order to 
explain the reason of my conduct, which I cannot but 
persuade myself your goodness will approve. 


Most devoutly wishing the new government may be 
succeeded by effecting the best good of the common- 
wealth, I have the honour to be with every expression of 
regard, Hoiible Gentlemen, 

Your much obliged & most obed fc hble. servant. 

James Bowdoin. 

Boston, Oct 31, 1780. 

Published in the London Courant of 6 Dec b , 1780.* 

Seeing that the abundant publications about rebellion, 
treason, & treasonable practice against the state (as dis- 
covered from M r Laurens's papers) have somewhat sub- 
sided, it may not be amiss to rectify a few mistakes 
concerning a gentleman whose name has been held out 
not much to his advantage. 

M r Temple did not go out with the Commissioners to 
North America, as hath been generally supposed. He 
did not leave England till near two months after the 
Commissioners had sailed ; and it was long before he 
arrived in that country that they had failed in their 
conciliatory attempts, the Congress having ratified the 
Treaty of Alliance & plighted their faith with the Court 
of France before the Commissioners arrived at Philadel- 
phia.! M r Temple went to America without commission, 
instruction, or even a single sentiment suggested to him 
as a rule for his conduct in that country ; but he under- 

* This Declaration, including the caption, is printed from a copy in the handwriting of 
Mr. Temple, and is incorrectly dated " 1781." The indorsement, which is also in his hand- 
writing and was apparently made at the same time, gives the correct date, " 1780." — Eds. 

t Two treaties between France and the United States were signed at Paris, Feb. 6, 1778, 
the British government was formally notified of the completion of one of them March 18; 
and both treaties were ratified by Congress May 4. The British Commissioners arrived 
at Philadelphia in June, and on the 9th of that month wrote a letter to Congress which 
was received on the 13th. On the 18th Congress voted unanimously not to treat with 
the mother country except on " an explicit acknowledgment of the independence of these 
States " or the withdrawal of the British fleets and armies. —Eds. 


stood before lie left England that the terms on which the 
British ministers were disposed ultimately to make peace 
with America were that the Colonies should legislate for them- 
selves, and trade ivhere they pleased ; that the sovereignty sh d 
remain for an union of force only, which terms he considered 
as a surrender of the substance of independence to the 
Colonies ; and having not heard of the treaty of eventual 
alliance (the treaty of commerce only having transpired) 
he thought it very probable that America would have 
consented to such terms. 

M r Temple had but very little knowledge of the Com- 
missioners, Governor Johnstone was in ill health the few 
weeks that M r Temple was at New York, and he never 
saw Lord Carlisle & M r Eden but once, & then only for a 
short visit. If (as some people have taken the liberty to 
suggest) bribery & corruption was any part of their busi- 
ness in that country, M r Temple was an entire stranger 
to it. M r Temple may flatter himself that his character 
is such that the Commissioners never could have expected 
to derive any assistance from him by any dishonorable 
means ; and he may be as happy in not doubting that the 
people of his own country have full & sufficient confidence 
in the inflexibility of his honour and of his integrity. M r 
Temple went out an avowed friend to his country ; he 
appeared as such upon all and every occasion while he 
was there (the honourable testimonials lately published 
from General Washington, the Govern" Livingston, 
Trumbull, Powell, and others support the fact) and he 
returned to England precisely in the same sentiments 
with which he went out, all which Lord North per- 
sonally knows from that gentleman. 

M r Temple was no negotiator in America on the part 
of the Commissioners, or of any one of them, nor did he 
carry a sentiment or an idea from them, or from any 
of the British ministers, when he went into the United 
States, as he declared to the several powers within those 


States when he was admitted. M r Temple most cordially 
wished for peace, and was heartily glad when he was in- 
formed that fair, honest, & honourable terms were going out 
to be offered to Congress, and himself requested to pre- 
cede (though unfortunately he did not) and apprize them 
of it. To such terms M r Temple would have given all the 
assistance that might have been in his power at a fair 
meeting of the parties ; and it is to be lamented that 
such terms were not sent out, and time enough to have 
had a chance of success, when much blood & treasure 
might thereby have been saved to both countries, and 
an end have been put to a war which now bids fair to 
surpass any that has happened in modern ages. 

M r Temple, though an American by birth and in prin- 
ciple, has never been an enemy to this country ; and he 
did most sincerely wish and expect to have been in some 
measure instrumental to the discontinuing the war when 
he returned to England & assured Lord North, as he 
did in the most express terms, on the first day of his ar- 
rival, that, notwithstanding whatever his Lordship might 
have heard from gentlemen who had never been without 
the lines of the British army in America, the people of 
that country were very much united in their determina- 
tion never to return under the government of England ; 
nor was there in his, M r Temple's, opinion, offered with 
diffidence, any probability of the British arms effecting 
that object, though the war sh d be protracted to a long & 
to a distressing period. 

Whether such, Mr. Temple's, sentiments were well or ill 
founded, or whether Lord North was right or wrong in 
giving more credit to other & opposite accounts, time only 
can determine. Under such circumstances and actuated 
by such a persuation, could any act a fairer or a more 
manly part than to return to England and give a just rep- 
resentation of the truth ? 

J. Temple. 



Philadelphia, Dec 1 " 25 th , 1780. 

Dear Sir, — I see by the newspapers your ultimate 
determination to retire from business, which, tho I lament 
with regard to the public, I cannot but hope it will oper- 
ate a perfect re-establishment of your health, so as to 
enable you to return to the service of our country with 
renewed strength. In the meantime your retirement may 
be stil'd, with the most perfect propriety, otium cum 

Congress is much occupied with the very difficult busi- 
ness of establishing the army & their finances. They 
have at length, & I fear too late, adopted the measure of 
sending a minister expressly to obtain the necessary aids 
from the Court of Versailles. Col. Laurens is the gentle- 
man fixd upon, of whom I cannot speak higher than by 
assuring you that he is the worthy son of a most worthy 

I have recommended three things to Congress which 
appear to me most material for the honor & interests of 
these States, — the appointment of a minister to cultivate 
the Court of Petersburg as the head of the neutral league ; 
the establishment of a Secretary of State for foreign 
affairs ; & the removal of Doctor Franklin. A committee 
has been appointed to consider these propositions & has 
reported in favor [of] them. The two first have been 
adopted accordingly, & the third is now under considera- 
tion. M r Dana is named charge des af aires for the Court 
of Petersburg, where I hope he will do his country ser- 
vice & himself honor. The captains lately arrived from 
L'Orient give a hopeless account of the supplies for the 
army, as there has been so much & such apparently 
wilfull mismanagement in the shipping them. 

* See note, ante, p. 214. — Eds. 

1781.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 449 

Please to make my respects acceptable to M rs Bowdoine, 
& remember me to M rs Temple, your son & his lady. I 
have not heard a syllable of M r Temple. Indeed the 
letters received from France are of an old date & very 
unsatisfactory. I have the honor to be with the greatest 
esteem, dear Sir, 

Y r most obed* serv\ 

Arthur Lee. 


Boston, Jan? 11 th , 1781. 

Sir, — I had y e honour of writing to you by M r Guild 
some months ago.* He probably acquainted you there 
was a bill then depending in our Assembly for incorporat- 
ing a philosophical society. It has been compleated, and 
the society formed under the name of the American Acad- 
emy of Arts & Sciences. They have had several meetings ; 
and at y e last several gentlemen of distinguished charac- 
ters were put in nomination, and there is no doubt will be 
chosen members at the next meeting. Among them is 
my much esteemed friend [D r Franklin] the first ambas- 
sador of the American United States, on whose election I 
hope to have the pleasure at that time of felicitating the 
Academy. In the mean time give me leave to present to 
you a specimen of its first fruit, which though it be unripe 
and imperfect and shews but an inferior power of vegeta- 
tion in the particular stock from whence it fell, it is hoped 
will be the harbinger of maturer and better flavoured 
fruits from other stocks in y e same plantation. I am 
with real affection and regard, in which M rs Bowdoin & 
M rs Temple most cordially join with me, my dear friend, 
Y r m° ob* hble. serv*. 

* The letter here referred to is printed in 2 Proceedings, vol. viii. p. 290. — Eds. 




Boston, Feb?, 1781. 

Dear Sir, — Your obliging letter of y e 25 th of Dec r I 
rec d by Col Laurens, and thank you for the information 
contained in it. He sailed in y e Alliance y e 12 th instant. 
I hope his passage will be more fortunate than his worthy 
father's, and that a better fate will attend him, especially 
as he is going on so important a business. It is a pity 
this business had not been more early attended to, as upon 
the success of it our vigorous operations depend. With- 
out money to call forth and put in exercise the other 
means of carrying on the war, our operations must be faint 
and inefficacious, for which reason when the French min- 
ister, M r de la Luzerne, was here the last fall I represented 
to him the necessity of our being supplied with a suffi- 
ciency of money, in which case it might be expected that 
our exertions in concurrence with theirs would be ade- 
quate to the effecting the great object of the war ; but 
without it we should not be able to co-operate with them 
efficaciously ; that our will was good, but this necessary 
mean wanting ; that the establishment of „a certain regular 
fund for that supply for a number of years would of itself, 
without one victory gained over the enemy, bring them 
to a peace founded on American independency ; it being 
manifest y y placed their greatest hopes of final success in 
destroying or exhausting our finances. M r de la Luzerne 
fully concurred in this representation & opinion, and said 
that although he knew it would be difficult for France to 
spare money for that purpose he would represent y e mat- 
ter fully to y e French ministry, who he doubted not w d do 
what they could, and would also endeavour to procure 
money from Spain for the use of the United States. If 
he sent letters at that time on the subject he will prob- 
ably soon receive an answer to them, and communicate it 

1781.] L. DE NEUFVILLE. 451 

to Congress. It is time, if it has not been done already, 
that a serious and earnest representation sh d be made to 
y e minister of France of y e inadequate ness of our finances 
to carry on the war, in order that she may be led by her 
own interest to exert herself effectually, and at y e same 
time enable y e United States strenuously to co-operate 
with her, for y e purpose of securing on a permanent basis 
the independency of the States. 

The ladies thank you for your notice of them, and 
return their respectful compliments. I have the honour 
to be with y e greatest regard, d r Sir, 

Y r m° ob\ 


Sir, — It is at the request of my worthy friend the 
Honourable John Temple, Esq r , that I have the honour 
to address you, & it is with so much the greater pleasure 
as the civilities he paid me when in London last fall de- 
serve all my gratitude. M r Temple wished me to inform 
you of the situation of politicks, who then allready were 
very precarious, but are still much more so now. Not 
the least idea could we entertain of England's declaring 
warr against this republicq, after the efforts that haughty 
power had made to prevent her from acceeding to the 
armed neutrality had proved fruitless, yet that was 
done both unexpectedly and in a treacherous manner. 
Whether the intent was of having some chief persons 
among us Be Witted, as they call'd it in the newspapers, 
I will not determine ; but should it have happen'd, it 
would no doubt have pleased the English Ministery 
very much, whilst they appear to make it a rule of 

* Son of John de Neufville, head of a banking-firm in Amsterdam, with whom John 
Adams had frequent negotiations in regard to loans to Congress. — Eds. 


politicks to divide those they hate, to bring them better 
to submission. 

They have not succeeded in their infernal system 
with America. I hope they will not in Holland. I 
can honestly assure you at least that they have by 
those measures raised an inveterate hatred from the 
people at large, not only against them, but also against 
those who appeared to be their partizans. Russia, how- 
ever, proposed a mediation which was accepted of by 
their High Mighty nesses, but rejected by England, & it 
is supposed that the Empress will in resentment of it 
join the general quarrel. We may hear about it in a 
very short time ; the preparations are made meanwhile 
with more vigour than before ; & we must hope that the 
honour of the country will be in short regained, but when 
& how the quarrel will end seems yet hid in the decrees 
of Providence. For my part at least I confess that I do 
not see sufficiently ground to build an opinion upon, un- 
less it be the general one that England will be at last 
exhausted & forced to peace, but that gives not much 
decision, though adding 20 millions upon 12 m. and so 
on, & giving 21 for 12 in money appear^ the dying sighs 
of publiq credit, & that lost is England sunk. I had often 
the pleasure to converse with M r Temple and the worthy 
D r P. & others on that subject, but the time when this 
alteration should happen appeard allways doubtfull, & 
the people in England seemed too much abated by Lord 
Gordon's affairs to make any forcible opposition against 
the ruinous measures of the government ; should I now 
look out for a speedy peace, I confess it is from America 
& the exertions 1 hope that will be made there, that more 
then anything else will revive us in Europe ; & Cornwallis 
& Arnold's situation by the latest accounts gave very 
promising hopes about it. I had expected M r Temple 
here before now, as he had manifested to me & some 
more friends that it was his intention ; but I should 

1781.] L. DE NEUFVILLE. 453 

suppose that the expectation since of great events & 
the hopes of serving his country by holding up, when 
it may be of service, the impossibility of succeeding in 
this warr for Great Brittain, is what still detains him ; 
perhaps there may be private matters likewise. I know 
at least that he did what he could to serve M r Trumbull, 
who was infamously taken up against the express promiss 
given by Lord Geo. Germain that he would be safe. M r 
Temple had at that time himself a hard task to sustain 
all the sarcasms that where thrown upon him, but he 
withstood them with the greatest firmness. The inter- 
course of writing being much interrupted now, I have 
not heard for some time particular accounts of him, but 
long to see him over here. 

I join to this the newspapers he gave me for that pur- 
pose, but their being so old will render them, I am afraid, 
uninteresting. I wished I had others of a later date, but 
unfortunately have nothing but a few ministerial papers 
which could not offer much delight. I look only some 
times into them, to see how they represent matters to 
the people. I ought yet to have mentioned, I believe 
that M r Temple was very anxious about some papers he 
intrusted to M r Jarvis, but which I suppose this has lost 
in his shipwreck. 

Give me leave to end now with sincerest wishes that 
the present troubles may soon subside, by the full triumph 
of liberty & humiliation of that proud country which 
wanted to govern the sea as a tyrant breaking thro all 
the laws of nations, & that the similarity of birth, int- 
rest, & treatment from England may produce everlasting 
ties of friendship between the thirteen United States & 
this republiq. I have the honour to be with the greatest 
respect, Sir, 

Your most obedient humble servant. 

L. de Neufville, son of J a . 

Amsteldam, 1 th May, 1781. 


P. S. I beg that you would excuse the several faults 
which my copist made in this letter, using commonly one 
because my own writing is rather difficult to be read. It 
appears now that Russia is not much disposed to assist us, 
which we must hope wil accelerate the alliance between 
the two republicks proposed by H. E. M r Adams, whose 
memorial is received by the people at large with the 
greatest applause. I had lately a letter from a common 
friend in London which mentions M r Temple's having 
taken leave, thus I am in hopes of seeing him every day. 

To the Honourable J. Bowdoin, Esq r , late President of the 
General Assembly, Boston. 


Plymo, May 24 th , 1781. 

Sir, — I have lately received several letters from my 
son, dated Feb y & March. He left London the 1 st of Feb y , 
& was desired by M r Temple to inform you that he should 
have wrote by him if it had been possible. My son writes 
that M r Temple intended to leave England in March, but 
he doubts whether he will be permitted to do it, being so 
very obnoxious to the ministry, tho' at the same time he 
thinks it would be good policy in them to suffer him to 
leave England, as his residence there is very prejudicial to 
them. He writes of M r Temple in the same stile that 
Trumbull did ; expresses great resentment at the sus- 
picions that have been malevolently circulated, & wishes 
he was able to express his esteem in stronger language, 
after he had said many things, & among them that lie 

* James Warren was born in Plymouth, Sept. 28, 1726, graduated at Harvard College 
in 1745, married Mercy, sister of the younger James Otis, in 1754, and was elected a mem- 
ber of the House of Representatives in 17G6, serving until 1774. Subsequently he was 
President of the Provincial Congress, and discharged other important trusts. He died at 
Plymouth, Nov. 27, 1808. See Drake's Dictionary of American Piography, p. 956. — Eds. 

1781.] JOHN TEMPLE. 455 

wishd as well to the great American cause as I do. I 
wish you may soon have the pleasure of hearing of M r 
Temple's arrival at Paris or Amsterdam. He is very nar- 
rowly watched by the ministry. My son was taken up & 
examined by Justice Wright & by Lord Hillsborough ; 
& after being permitted to go at large, & after his Lord- 
ship had condescended to wish him a good voyage to the 
Continent, was again taken up at Margate, & all his papers 
examined ; he supposes in expectation of rinding letters 
from M r Temple. M r Robert Temple had been very ill in 
London, went in Decem r to Dublin & the last accounts lay 
at the point of death. You will please to make my com- 
pliments to M rs Bowdoin & M rs Temple. I am, Sir, with 

great respect, 

Your obed* hum le serv*. 

J. Warren. 


[July, 1781.] 

Dear Sir, — It is with no small pleasure that I have it 
in my power to tell you I am now upon the Continent, & 
at liberty to write an innocent letter to a friend in another 
kingdom without running the risque of having M r Wed- 
derburn's extraordinary tallents at constructive treason exer- 
cised upon it. I have for a long time been wishing, waiting, 
& in some measure expecting, that England would open her 
eyes to her real interests, &, as a leading step to get out 
of her perilous condition, withdraw her ships & troops & 
treat for peace with America as a free & independent peo- 
ple, when a general peace might soon happily take place ; 
but all prospects of that kind appear to be at as great a 
distance as they were several years ago. I therefore pur- 
pose to get back to my own country by the first good op- 

* This letter is printed from a rough draught or copy in Mr. Temple's own hand. — Eds. 


portunity, either from France, Spain, or Holland. In my 
last letters from Boston M r Bowdoin expresses his earnest 
wish that I would not return without seeing D r Franklin. 
This he need not have mentioned, for my own inclination 
to have that pleasure could not be heightened. I therefore 
mean to set out from hence for Paris upon the return of 
this post, when I promise myself the pleasure of receiving 
a line from you ; and as I have not the French language, 
& shall probably travell alone, I shall be very much obliged 
to you for any information that you may think will ren- 
der my jurney the least troublesome, & for a pasport if it 
be necessary. M r Trumbull was fortunately liberated in 
England a few weeks ago, & is now here with me, but, I 
believe, has at present no thoughts of coming to France.* 
Man} 7 rumors have been propigated in England concern- 
ing your ill state of health, it is with pleasure that I have 
learnt since my arrival here that you are as well as you 
have been for many years past. That you may for many 
more continue so, is the unfeigned w T ish of, d r Sir, 
Your most obed fc & most affectionate h. s. 

Your many valuable friends in Eng d retain the warmest 
& most affectionate regards for you, & I am particularly 
charged with the compliments of the Bishop S fc Asaph, 
the Dean of Winchester, D r Price, & D r Hartley, & several 


Your obliging favor of the 15 th ins* from Passey is now 
before me, and I read it with the greater pleasure as it con- 
firmed what I had before heard, that you are very well & 

* John Trumbull was released in the beginning of June, 1781, and immediately crossed 
to the Continent. lie met Mr. Temple at Ostend, and they travelled together in Holland 
for several weeks. See Autobiography of John Trumbull, pp. 78-81. — Eds. 

t A rough draught, unsigned, indorsed by Temple : "Copy to Dr Franklin, Amster- 
dam, July 2G, 1781." —Eds. 

1781.] JOHN TEMPLE. 457 

in good spirits. The several circumstances you have men- 
tioned are sufficient to have determined me not to come to 
Paris, especially as the Minerva, Capt. Brown, from New- 
bury, arrived here since I wrote to you, and the Capt. tells 
me he expects to return to the same port in the course of 
the next month. The ship you mention to be about sail- 
ing is so crowded, and with such a variety of characters, 
that it would not have been very agreeable to me to have 
embarked on board her. But the Minerva, I trust, will be 
a good and safe conveyance. My being considered where 
you are as a doubtful character not a little surprized me, as I 
had not the most distant idea of it. The series of trouble 
& mortification I have had from the beginning of the con- 
test, the sacrifices I have made, the losses & persecution I 
have sustained, but ill agree with any want of friendship 
for the cause of my country or my having any secret con- 
nection with the English Minister. Nevertheless, to see 
that same Minister, if I could, was one part of my errand 
in returning from America about 2 years ago, and I did 
see him, and talked to him for more than two hours, on 
the first day I got to London. Let me shortly state the 
matter to you. After I had been 5 or 6 months at Boston, 
& in the other Northern States, the English newspapers 
arrived with the examination of Galloway at the bar of 
the House of Commons, & the speeches of Eden, Johnstone 
& others in Parliament, all concurring & labouring to make 
the people of England believe that the independence of 
America could not be maintained, for that dissensions & 
discord were in their councils, their paper medium ruined & 
at an end, & 4/5 tbs of the people disposed to get rid of the 
tyranny of Congress & return under the government of 
Great Britain. These, you will remember, were the sen- 
timents at that time urged by the apostate Johnstone & 
other Ministerialists in Parliam*, & the minority had to 
contradict those sentiments. I had, before the arrival of 
these speeches, been deliberately through the Northern & 


Middle States, & at Philadelphia had conversed with some 
of the first people from the Southern States, and there- 
fore, personally knowing that such sentiments so advanced 
by the perfidious Johnstone, Eden & others (who had never 
been without the lines of the British Army) were utterly 
false, proposed to my friends at Boston to return imme- 
diately to England and there state the matter as I per- 
sonally knew it to be, to the Minister if I could get access 
to him, or, if not, to give the minority an opp ty of bring- 
ing me to the bar of the House, where I might confront 
these false informations that had so basely been given by 
Galloway & supported by Johnstone & Eden. M r B., D r 
C.j D r C, D r Winthrop & others, highly approved of the 
idea of my coming, pleased with an expectation that such 
an evidence as myself, who had so lately been in the 
United States & personally knew the sentiments of the 
people, might probably invalidate Galloway's information 
& be the means of the English Ministry giving up the 
contest & turning their thoughts to peace, upon a full 
acknowledgement of the independency of those States. I 
lost no time in getting to London &, on the first day of 
my arrival there, had a free conversation with L d North 
for more than two hours. My endeavours were to estab- 
lish in his mind the serious truth, viz* that, to my per- 
sonal knowledge, the people of America were united in 
their determination never to return under the govern- 
ment of Britain, and that, upon y e observation I had 
made upon what I had seen & heard upon the spot, I was 
clear in opinion that, however long or distressing the war 
might be continued for that purpose, it would in the end 
be found fruitless. This was the text upon which I des- 
canted to the utmost of my abilities. His L d ship appeared 
to be both staggered & disconcerted, said he had had in- 
formation almost directly opposite to what I had given, 
that M r [illegible] was tired of the business & was coming 
home. I was astonished at the load of misinformation 

1781.] JOHN TEMPLE. 459 

with which his mind was crowded, but at the same time 
thought I had made no small impression upon him, but 
feared that might be soon erased by those whose senti- 
ments he is obliged to adopt. Since that interview I 
have never seen L d North, nor have I ever had any con- 
versation of any kind with any other of the Ministry, or 
with their adherents. Since I have been in England my 
acquaintance has been many, my intimates but few. Tlie 
D. of Rutland, David & Winch comb Hartley, D r Price, 
Dean Ogle, M r Townshend, & one or two more, composed 
the circle I lived in, and I believe I did an essential 
service to my country in fortifying the minds of the 
minority from time to time against the false reports in- 
vented by our enemies, and I have been waiting in hopes 
& expectation of the truth's prevailing at last in the mind 
of the Minister, whoever he be, when peace might be the 
happy consequence. Had the views I went to Eng d upon 
been successful, had the truths which I carried been at- 
tended to rather than Galloway's falsehoods, I think I sh d 
have done a most essential service ; at any rate, my coun- 
try is welcome to my endeavour. I have faithfully done 
it all the good that was in my power ; I never was, or 
will be, other than its friend. The cause of America is a 
just one & would remain unalterably so in my mind even 
if still more extraordinary & unaccountable events sh 1 
occur in the maintaining of it. Why should I be sur- 
prized at the suspicions you mention when I see that like, 
or greater, suspicions are raised on purpose to shake the 
characters of the first & best friends & servants of Amer- 
ica on both sides the water ? God grant that the cause, 
good as it is, may not be deeply injured or disfigured by 
such unaccountable suspicions ! Do not affairs begin to 
wear a complexion something like the famous Salem 
Witchcraft, which got to such a height that Judges, 
magistrates & the best people were accused of being wiz- 
zards ? You will laugh, but, upon my honor, knowing 


what I know and hearing what I have heard, the resem- 
blance strikes me forceably. Independent of personal re- 
gard, some of the best friends to the liberty of mankind 
now in England have been grieved at the attacks lately 
made in the prints upon the character of D r F., a name 
gone forth in glory to the world (I dont mean to com- 
pliment). It is a public name, which in the history of 
America must be either one of its greatest ornaments or a 
disfigurement to it, there can be no medium. A sincere 
friend of yours, who hath the most unshaken faith that 
it will be the first, defended that character from an attack 
in the Courant and asked the printer how he, in a paper 
which he called patriotic, could publish such a piece con- 
cerning such a person. He replied it was sent over to be 
published by a person on this side the water whom I have 
since seen squinting about this place, but w th whom I have 
never exchanged a word. I mention this to shew what 
reptiles & vermin may raise a dust, what little creatures 
may attack even any character ; and I do in my conscience 
believe that Britain hath her incendiaries placed about for 
the purpose of disseminating suspicion & distrust of each 
other among the most sincere friends to the American 
cause. The atrocious villain who worse than rob'cl the 
poor pensioners of their stipend in Eng d I have ever 
thought to be in that way. I have seen your letters to 
M r Hodgson in Lond concerning that affair & my indig- 
nation was inexpressible. 

The other part of my view in coining to Europe was 
concerning myself principally, which M r B. urged me to. 
You know we were dismissed from our several employ- 
ments under the Crown of England at one & the same time 
and for one & the same cause. That cause must be full 
in your remembrance. Had the eight gentlemen to 
whom a communication of the utmost importance to the 
welfare of our country not violated the most positive 
injunction from you, neither you nor I w d have been 

1781.] JOHN TEMPLE. 461 

dismissed. I sb d not have lost £1000 a year sterling 
and as good an interest in Eng d as p r haps any American 
could then boast of, nor have been put to the risk of my 
life & obliged to suffer the thousand anxieties & mortifica- 
tions I have since endured. Those gentlemen, however, 
for the salvation (as they thought & I believe rightly 
thought) of our country, did violate the injunction that 
was sent over with incendiary letters & papers, and the 
consequences I have mentioned followed. It was never 
in my power, after hostilities commenced, to get home 
with my family sooner than I did ; but I never had a 
doubt that, when I sh d be so happy as to get home, my 
country would compensate my pecuniary losses. My other 
sufferings it was not in their power to compensate. And 
when I was in America I stated the matter to the seven 
survivors of those eight gentlemen (M r Pitts died before 
my arrival) who all acknowledge the unspeakable advan- 
tage those letters gave them in that early stage of their 
troubles, as they were the first positive proofs of the 
designs & plan machinating against the liberties of the 
country by men who had such unbounded influence ; but 
they declared that, though they knew I had suffered in 
Eng d on that acco* upon conjecture of the English Minis- 
try, they never had the least knowledge or intimation of 
my having had any share or hand in bringing these docu- 
ments to light and to the eyes of my country. I told 
them I had been privy to the whole transaction ; that it 
ivas through my means that you were able to obtain them ; 
that they ivere obtained in an honorable ivay ; but, to save an 
innocent person, whose bread depended on the Ministry 
& who would have been suspected, the most positive in- 
junction from you, at my request, accompanyed those 
letters, which injunction they thought necessary for the 
public welfare to violate, and the consequences were the 
dismission & losses I have mentioned. They expressed 
a wonder that I return'd home at that time without first 


writing to you for such a statement of the matter as would 
leave my claim upon them without a doubt ; for that, if 
it was manifested to them that I had the claim I then 
made, they in conscience sh d think themselves doubly 
bound (seeing they had broke the injunction) to see that I 
was compensated to the utmost. I told them, in the first 
place, it was an affair which I would never have ventured 
to write a line from Eng d to you upon, for I had felt suffi- 
ciently to deter me from running the risk of making fresh 
enemies; and, in the next place, that I had concluded 
D r Franklin, when in America, had so clearly stated the 
whole of that memorable affair that I could not fail, on 
my return home, of receiving any amends that was in the 
power of my country. M r dishing, to whom the letters 
& injunction were particularly enclosed, said that your 
private letter to him, with the direction concerning the 
documents, was lost or mislaid during the time the British 
troops were at Boston, that he could not recollect precisely 
what your injunction was ; but they all agreed that if I 
had the share in that meritorious business which I said 
I had (but which could only be ascertained from D r F.) 
they sh d think themselves in honor & conscience bound to 
attend to my interest, and, least any accident sh d happen 
to me, for the benefit of my family they signed a paper 
to that purpose before I left Boston. 

Thus have I, in as clear a manner as I am able, stated 
to you my views in coming to Europe, and all that I have 
now to request is that you will, in your own way & accord- 
ing to your own idea of justice to me, send me such a testi- 
monial as you may think proper. I do not wish you to 
write a word upon this business (tho' so interesting to 
myself & to my children), or upon the former part of this 
letter, but what conscience clearly dictates to you. You 
was my fellow-sufferer & greatly suffered, but our coun- 
try has made you every amends that was in its power, at 
which I have sincerely rejoiced, and have detested the 

1781.] LORD WALSINGHAM. 463 

little envious people who have strove to deprive you of the 
large share you have had in the preservation of its liberties. 
I am now going home, where I hope to lay my bones, with- 
out ever seeing Europe again. This last trip hath cut deep 
into the remains of my patrimony. I, however, have a 
bountiful friend in M r Bowdoin, and, at the same time, I 
have full faith that, when testimony is borne to the jus- 
tice of my claim, myself or my children will not be total 
losers by the most important event of my life, an event 
that a sceptre would not tempt me to experience again. 

You must not expect a correct letter from me, especially 
a letter intended, for the eye only of a friend. I never 
could write correctly, but I hope to be understood. Had 
I seen you, as I wished to have done, I had many anecdotes 
to have communicated, which would p r haps have been 
entertaining & some, I believe, usefull to you. Pulteney 
has been a rascal both to you & to me, but both himself & 
his brother Judas are now in contempt, even in England ! 
However desirable to me, it would be too troublesome for 
you at your time of life, or even for myself at 50, to 
exchange sentiments on paper upon many events that 
have happened. It is more than probable now that I 
shall never see you, but be assured that I most sincerely 
wish you a calm & pleasant evening of life and unceasing 
happiness forever after, for I am, with unfeigned esteem 
& regard, d r Sir, 

Your most obed* &c. 


Upper Harley Street, Aug* 9 th , 1781. 

Sir, — I have made the proper communication of the 
different letters which you have written to me from Ostend 

* Thomas de Grey, 2d Baron Walsingham, was born July 14, 1748, succeeded his father, 
who was an eminent lawyer and jurist, in May, 1781, and died Jan. 16, 1818. From Sept., 
1780, until some time in the following year he was one of the Lords of Trade. — Eds. 


in addition to those which I had received from you in 
England ; and I am authorized to acquaint you that no 
offers will at present be made on the part of Great Britain, 
lest they should be treated with the same contempt that 
the Commissioners were upon a former occasion, & lest 
undue advantages should be taken in America of the lib- 
eral disposition which prevails here ; at the same time his 
Majesty's ministers are ready to listen with the utmost 
attention to any offers that may be made by yourself, or 
by M r Adams, or by M r Laurens, or by any other person 
who can communicate with certainty the sentiments of 
America to the Secretary of State for that department. 
And you may be assured of meeting with the most sin- 
cere and earnest desire to put an end to the war upon 
safe, honourable, & constitutional terms. You will do 
me the favor to acknowledge the receipt of this letter, 
and believe me, Sir, 

Your obedient humble servant. 

J. Temple, Esq. 
Indorsed : " Rec d the day I embarked from Holland for America." 


Docter Franklin and M r Temple were in the Year 1774 
upon one and the same day, and for one and the same 
cause, dismissed from the several employments they held 
under the Crown of Great Britain, expressly for their 

* This document is printed from an attested copy to which Mr. Temple has prefixed 
the following heading: " Mr. Temple's Declaration to the Council, which, at their request, 
was submitted in writing." In a volume of Historical Pamphlets in the Library of this 
Society is a statement signed "Narrator," printed on three sides of a newspaper sheet, in- 
dorsed" " A Faithful] Narrative of the Conduct of the Governor and of the Proceedings of 
the General Court concerning Mr. Temple, from his Arrival at Boston in Octo', 1781, to the 
present 27* h May, 1783." It is without imprint, and was presumably sent out with one of 
the Boston newspapers. The internal evidence shows that it was written by Mr. Temple 
himself. — Eds. 


attachment to the American cause ; and particularly for 
their having obtained, and transmitted to the State of 
Massachusetts, certain original letters & papers which 
first discovered with certainty the perfidious plans then 
machinating against the freedom & happiness of the then 
Colonies, now independent States in North America. M r 
Temple by such dismission lost upwards of a thousand 
pounds sterling p r ann. besides several very honorary ap- 
pointments under that Crown. Doct r Franklin's loss was 
about £500 a year. Doct r Franklin soon after returnd 
to America, and met with every mark of respect & grati- 
tude that was in the power of the State to which he 
belonged, to confer upon him. M r Temple made every 
effort to obtain permission to leave England with his 
family but without success, until the summer of 1778, 
when he with his family, returned also, and was received 
with kindness & respect by the State of Massachusetts, to 
which he belonged. He was also by the Hon ble Council of 
that State, as well as by the Council of the State of New 
Hampshire, by Gen 1 Washington, by the Gov r of Connec- 
ticut, the Governor of New Jersey, the Lieu* Gov r of Rhode 
Island and by many of the most respectable private char- 
acters in the Northern & Middle States, recommended in 
the most handsome manner to the supreme power of the 
United States. 

Upon M r Temple's return from Congress to Boston, he 
found by the speeches (then just arrived) of Gov r John- 
stone, Lord Carlisle, M r Eden and others in Parliament, as 
well as from the examination of M r Galloway & General 
Robertson at the bar of the House of Commons, that it 
was there asserted & maintained, that four fifths of the 
people of America were well disposed to return under the 
government of Great Britain ; that Congress could not 
continue a resistance to the sovereign power of Britain 
even for another year ; that the state of their paper cur- 
rency and their violent internal divisions were such as 



would throw the whole continent into confusion in less 
than the course of a year. M r Temple, being fully per- 
suaded from personal observation upon the spot, as well 
as from the sentiments of the most respectable & well 
informed gentlemen of the several States he had passed 
thro', that such assertions were totally without foundation, 
and being at the same time personally well acquainted with 
those of the minority in England who are sincere & faith- 
ful friends to the independence & welfare of these United 
States, who wished to know facts in order to counteract 
such false representations, immediately entertained the 
idea of going back to Europe, and into England, if he 
should find by some friends then at the German Spaa, 
that he might with personal safety venture into that king- 
dom, and there confront, & to the utmost of his power in- 
validate, such misrepresentations as had been so made by 
the said Lord Carlisle, Johnstone, Galloway, and others. 
M r Temple's idea met with the approbation of his par- 
ticular friends. He therefore embarked for Holland in 
the m° of May, and, soon after his arrival there, cross'd 
over into England, and in less than twelve hours after he 
got to London had an interview & a long conversation 
with Lord North, when in the most express and positive 
terms M r Temple assured his Lordship that the real state 
of affairs in America was almost directly opposite to the 
representations that had been made in the House and at 
the bar of the House of Commons. Vide M r Temple's 
declaration published in the London Courant of 6? Dec r 
last, which, tho' not apt to attend much to out doors 
clamour, he was in a manner compelled to publish at that 
time when the ministerial vengeance was levelled at him 
upon the disclosure of M r Laurens's letters & papers & those 
found upon M r Trumbull. M r Temple never afterwards 
had any interview with Lord North or with any other of 
the British Ministers, though he still continued in England 
by advice and at the earnest request of the most sincere 


and able friends to America that are in that kingdom, 
purposely, & for no other business than to serve his 
country, by counteracting the poison that was daily dis- 
seminating there and hoping from day to day that the 
governing powers of that kingdom would listen to truth, 
open their eyes to the precipice they were upon, see the 
utter impracticability, as well as the injustice, of their 
views, and at once acknowledge the independence of these 
United States ; but in all this M r Temple found himself 
much disappointed. He was however continually em- 
ployed in invalidating the falsehoods from time to time 
advanced by Galloway and other wretched fugitives from 
this country, and in stating matters as they really were to 
enable our friends in both Houses of Parliament to contra- 
dict & oppose to the utmost such false & base assertions as 
were made of the state of affairs in this country, but find- 
ing, after a long & tedious waiting for the happy event 
which he had hoped for, that the British ministry, regard- 
less of the advice & opinion of the most able men in that 
kingdom, were determined to continue the war, with these 
States, even to the last stage of their own ruin rather 
than (do, what in M r Temple's opinion they noiv of abso- 
lute necessity must do) acknowledge the independence 
of these States, he determined in his mind to return 
home to Boston, but could not think of coming away 
without first endeavouring to assist M r Trumbull to ob- 
tain his liberty ; he felt for a worthy gentleman in con- 
finement in an enemy's country with few, very few, friends 
to do him any kindness further than making him a tran- 
sient visit. M r Temple therefore revolved that business 
in his mind & exerted his interest with his private friends 
to obtain M r Trumbull's liberation, which in a few weeks 
after was happily affected. M r Trumbull will gratefully 
acknowledge that M r Temple was not a little instrumental 
to such his releasement. The very day after M r Temple 
had assurances that this business was happily effected, he 


set out for Dover & cross'd over to Ostend ; from Ostend 
he and M r Trumbull proceeded to Amsterdam in Holland, 
there to seek a passage home to New England. M r Trum- 
bull embarked on board the Charlestown Frigate bound for 
Philadelphia, M r Temple on board the Minerva for New- 
buryport ; he arrived at Cape Ann on the 23 d ins 1 at 
night, and on the following day came to Boston, of which 
he had the honor to inform his Excell 7 the Governor of 
the State as soon as it was in his power after he got 
to town, and also to acquaint his Excell 7 that he was 
charged with letters, he believed of importance, to the 
Congress from his Excell 7 M r Adams, minister in Holland, 
and praying the Governor's advice (or direction) how they 
should be disposed of. On the day after M r Temple, re- 
ceived a summons, of which the following is copy. 

To Mr. John Temple. 

Commonwealth of Massachusetts. 
In Council Oct* 26 th , 1781. 

Ordered that M r Jn° Temple lately arriv'd in this 
Commonwealth f m Europe be and hereby is directed to 
attend at the Council Chamber at 4 o'clock this after- 

True copy. Attest. John Avery, Sec y . 

M r Temple instantly obeyed the order and, when di- 
rected, had the honor to approach the Board, where he 
answered to such questions as were put to him, and, as 
nearly as he can recollect, to say in substance what he 
hath here written. He moreover, to invalidate some 
malign ivhispcrs of persons whose names were not men- 
tioned to him which his Honor the President of the Coun- 
cil informed him had been circulated to his disadvan- 
tage,* voluntarily declared it was clearly his opinion that 

* The President snicl he had heard from a somebody that, when M r Temple was last in 
America it was his wish to destroy or unhinge the alliance between France and the United 
States. Hearsays & whispers from nameless somebodys are but vissionary evidence, little 

1781.] SAMUEL KIRKLAND. 469 

the freedom & happiness of these United States had been 
saved by their alliance with the Kingdom of France, that 
he was fully persuaded Great Britain would by arms have 
carried her point against this country if it had not been 
for the seasonable & manly interposition of that power, 
and that he hoped for the honor of his country that the 
spirit of whatever treaties may have been entered into 
at forming that alliance would be inviolably adherred to. 

John Temple. 

Boston, 30 th Octo r , 1781. 

True Copy. 

Attest. John Avery, Sec 7 . 


The Honorable Members of the Board of Scotch 
Commissioners in Boston, Gentlemen : — It is now 
about nine years since I was taken under the patronage, 
& entered on the service, of the Society of Scotland, as a 
missionary to the Indians, particularly those tribes called 
the Six United Nations ; but was put immediately under 
your care & direction for my support For the two first 
successive years after my engagement I received thro' 
your hands the salary allowed me by that Honorable 
Body, viz., £100 ster g p r an., with the addition of £30 
ster g in consideration of my being my own interpreter. 
Upon the commencement of hostilities your Board were 
dispersed (& one of the members in England till lately) 

expected to have been met with at the Council Board! Such can only be answered by flat 
negations. Let the person or persons to whom M r Temple mentioned his disapprobation 
of the alliance stand forth & maintain the fact. 'Tis a base & malignant falshood. — 
Marginal note in the handwriting of John Temple. 

* Rev. Samuel Kirkland was born in Norwich, Conn., Dec. 1, 1744, graduated at the 
College of New Jersey in 1765, and was ordained at Lebanon in June, 1766. He was one of 
the best beloved and most efficient of the missionaries to the Indians. He died at Clinton, 
Oneida County, N. Y., Feb. 28, 1808. See a memoir of him by his grandson, Rev. Dr. S. 
K. Lothrop, in 2 Sparks's American Biography, vol. xv. pp. 137-369. — Eds. 


which hath prevented any regular meeting, or your afford- 
ing me any support. 

Individual members of your Board thro' this long 
interval have repeatedly advised & requested me to per- 
severe in the business of my mission, tho' under great 
embarrassments, & wait the event of Divine Providence 
for my being supported in the usual way. I have accord- 
ingly prosecuted my mission & served the real interest of 
the Society, tho' not without considerable interruption, 
increasing difficulties & ex pence. The former means of 
support being suddenly cut off by the war, application 
was made to Congress in the- month of Octob r , 1775, 
for some present relief on my behalf, that the mission 
might not be wholly frustrated. They granted me the 
stipulated salary for the term of one year, since which 
I have received but a very small proportion. I am now 
so reduced & involved that I cannot prosecute my mission 
to any advantage, & with the shaddow of justice to my 
suffering & growing family, unless I have immediate assist- 
ance. Nor do I know any means by which I can extricate 
myself from present pressing straits without some relief 
from the Honorable Board, if it be within their reach. 

The Oneidas & Tuscaroras, to whom my labors have 
for some time been confined, are utterly unwilling to 
have me relinquish my ministerial charge of them, altho' 
I cannot constantly & so statedly reside with them during 
the war as I did heretofore. They desired me to lay the 
matter before the Hon ble Board of Commissioners ; and 
I earnestly request your advice & kind aid in my pres- 
ent situation. The disposition & circumstances of the 
Indians are such that it would hurt my feelings to 
immediately dissolve the connections which have so long 
subsisted between us ; nor should I chuse to do it without 
the knowledge and approbation of the Society. 

I am not now prepared, but purpose e'er long to lay 
before the Honorable Board an exact account of all the 


support I have had by charities and otherwise, with my 
expences since the year 1774 to the present day, and am, 

Your obedient and obliged humble servant. 

Sam l Kirkland, Miss bt . 

Boston, 2 d Nov, 1781. 

Rey d D k Mather, Clerk. 


Lebanon, 12 th Novem r , 1781. 

Dear Sir, — I congratulate you on the important 
success of the allied arms at Chesapeak. L fc General 
Earl Cornwallis may now return to Great Britain, and 
condole with L* General Burgoyne on their similar situa- 
tion, — likewise on the safe arrival of the Hon ble J. 
Temple, Esq r , to his native country, his family and friends. 
My son John is not arrived ; am waiting with concern for 
him. In a letter to me from Amsterdam, 13 th July last, 
he says, — " M r Temple is come over hither from England ; 
it is my duty to say, that the paragraph in the London 
papers, advertising me as an incendiary, and signed with 
the initials of his name, was a villainous trick of some 
American Refugees to ruin him and me at once. I fear 
you never received a letter which I wrote at that time, 
enclosing the paragraph and explaining it. This, how- 
ever, will remove all idea of his being such a person, for 
on the contrary I have every reason to believe that he is 
an honest friend to his country." I thought it might 
be agreable to you to know this, and perhaps of some 
service to M r Temple. With every sentiment of esteem 
and regard, I am, dear Sir, 

Your most obedient, hble. servant. 

Jon th Trumbull. 

Hon blb James Bowdoin, Esq r . 

* Jonathan Trumbull was born at Lebanon, Conn., Oct. 12, 1710, and died there Aug. 17, 
1785, leaving a high reputation for stainless character, sound judgment, and more than 
usual ability. From 1769 to 1783 he was Governor of Connecticut. See Appleton's 
Cyclopaedia of American Biography, vol. vi. p. 168. — Eds. 



Boston, May 4, 1782. 

Dear Sir, — I wrote you y e 12 th March, 1781, p r M 1 
Ja s Jackson, since which I have not had y e pleasure of a 
letter from you till yesterday, when I rec d your obliging 
letter of y e 11 th April, 1781, enclosing duplicates of those 
of y e 20 th Sept r & 17 th Feb 7 preceeding. I am much mor- 
tified that y e letter you left for me among my books never 
came to hand. I found a catalogue, and perhaps y e same 
you mention, but there was no letter or anything else 
enclosed in it. You have been very unlucky with regard 
to y e papers & acc ts you had divers times copied & for- 
warded to your father. However, 1 am glad I can inform 
you that he rec d your letter of y e 3 d Sept r last, with 
accounts & a power of attorney enclosed. He communi- 
cated them to me. I observe you have joined me in the 
power, and that it is your wish it might supercede M r 
Sam 1 Hewes's agency. I told you in a former letter, and 
I now repeat it with great sincerity, that it w d afford me 
the highest satisfaction to render you any service, either as 
y r attorney or in any other character. But it is my duty 
to tell you, what you appear to be apprehensive of, that 
your power will not annul M r Hewes's agency according 
to the opperation of y e present laws. As agent he had 
been, before y e letter of Sept 1 " last came to hand, endeav- 
ouring to settle with y r former attorney, M r Edw d Davis, 
but he refer d him to y e Com tee of Sequestration, to whom, 
he said, he was oblig d to deliver y e goods he had of yours 
under his care, or that they took them into their posses- 
sion. On receiving y r s d letter, y r father sent for me, and 

* George Erving was the second son of the Hon. John Erving, and a brother-in-law of 
Gov. IJowdoin. His first wife, to whom he was married in 1768, was Lucy, daughter of 
Isaac Winslow, of Roxbury. She died in 1770, leaving one son; and in 1775 he was mar- 
ried to Mary Macintosh, daughter of Isaac Royall, of Medford, who died childless in 1786. 
Mr. Erving survived her twenty years, and died in 1806. See 2 Proceedings, vol. v. p. 
10. — Eds. 

1782.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 473 

we thought from your recomendation of M r Hewes, & 
from his gen 1 character, it was fortunate that so honest 
& suitable a man had been appointed agent for you, and 
we supposed it w d meet with your approbation to deliver 
him the s d accounts after he had setled his own against 
you. Accordingly he was told so, and he said he w d 
make out & exhibit his acc° as soon as he conveniently 
could. But he has not yet done it. As soon as he does, 
if no objection occurs to his acc°, it will be further con- 
sidered whether it will be proper to deliver him y e s d 
accounts, w ch y r father desired me to take, and they are at 
present in my hands ; and I shall observe his directions 
concerning them. If they are put into M r Hewes's hands, 
he will receive whatever is recoverable on them, and from 
the nature of his office as agent must dispose thereof 
according as y e law directs, independently of your 
attorneys or yourself. When I am further informed 
of the state of your affairs here I will inform you. 

Last Aug st I rec d a letter from M r John Sparhawk, 
written at y e request of Lady Pepperrell, enclosing a copy 
of y r letter to her dated y e 24 th Feb ry , 1781, & desiring 
me as your attorney to draw, or at least endorse, bills on 
you to y e am° of y e sum mentioned in y e s d letter. I 
wrote in answ r that I had not rec d any power of attorney 
from you, but had you authorized me expressly to draw 
bills on you I sh d not be inclined to do it at y e then low 
rate at w ch bills were sold, unless I knew that you had 
been previously informed of y e rate & consented to it, in 
w ch case y e drawer could not be charged with doing what 
you would otherwise have a right to think an essential 
injury to you. I hope this prevented any bills from 
being drawn on you, as exh a at that time was 25 & 30 p r 
c* below par, but I have not heard what was finally done. 
Bills now are from 10 to 15 p r c { below par. Agreableto 
y r request I will make enquiry into y e state of y r late 
father M r Winslow's affairs, and let you know y e result. 


Y e manuscript essay on potash is not yet found. It 
was not in y e drawer of y r writing table when it came 
into y e hands of y r nephew, my son, to whom y r sister 
Waldo presented the table in your name, for w ch he 
esteems himself much obliged to you, and desires me 
to repeat his thanks. M rs Waldo will make a further 
search for y e manuscript, and when found your desire 
shall be complied with. We all rejoice with you in 
y e restoration of Sister Erving's health, y e continuance of 
y r own, and y e agreable prospects you have w th regard to 
your son's good disposition & genius.* 

The letters to me abovemention d are all I have rec d 
from you. They were enclosed to me in a letter from 
my nephew, M r John Erving, Jun r ? rec d yesterday by a 
flag from New York. He writes that you desire him to 
mention to me the death of Col Royall, that he died of 
y e small pox y e 16 of Oct last, that he left the Medford 
estate together with the Waipole farm to M rs Erving, the 
rest of his lands in America to his grandchildren, and 
that he appointed me with M r Fran 8 Dana, M r Oliver 
Wendell, & M r Willis (Hall, I suppose) his ex r8 for the 
management of the American estate. I am sorry for the 
death of my good old friend, more especially at this time, 
as it may affect yours & M rs Erving's interest. How 
the bequest will operate according to the present laws I 
do not know. For more than a year past a libel ex- 
hibited by y e Attorney Gen 1 has been depending in y e inf r 
court of Middlesex for y e confiscation of the estate in that 
county. M r Willis Hall (who has acted as attorney for 
Col Royall) by my advice employed M r Lowell to defend 
the action in behalf of Col Royall, and no judgment of 
court has been yet given against the estate in that 
county, nor anywhere else that I have heard of, except 
in Bristol in y e State of Rhode Island. M r Hall & myself 

* George William Erving, afterward minister of the United States to Spain, and a Cor- 
responding Member of this Society. — Eds. 

1782.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 475 

in behalf of Col Royall, soon after y e libel was exhibited, 
represented to y e Gen 1 Court his true character & conduct, 
& petitioned that he might have liberty to return hither, 
& that y e libel against his estate might be totally dis- 
continued, or at least suspended till his arrival. The 
Court have from time to time postponed y e consideration 
of y e petit n , but it has operated to suspend the process at 
y e inferior court. M r Hall has acted all along as Col 
Royall' s attorney, and living at Medford, where y e estate 
is, and being a judicious, honest man & fully acquainted 
with y e Colonel's affairs. I should think it adviseable that 
he should act as executor, which be assured will not 
prevent my doing everything in my power for yours & 
M rs Erving's interest. I am not capable of giving 
any further information in this affair at present, only 
that an authenticated copy of the will may be needful, 
and that M r Hall should be furnished with money 
to employ council, and do what is necessary to be 
done. Y r instructions should also be given at y e same 

Mine & M rs Bowdoin's most affectionate regards wait 
on you & y r good lady, in w ch all your other friends most 
cordially join. With every sentiment of y e most perfect 
esteem, I am," dear Sir, 



Boston, July 20, 1782. 
D R Sir, — The foregoing of the 4* h of May is copy of y e 
last letter I had y e pleasure of writing to you. It went 
T Trowbridge in the Firebrand by way of Amsterdam. 
I this day rec d your favours of the 8 th Dec r (the duplicate) 
& the 9 th Feb ry last. M r Hews has not yet exhibited his 
account, nor have the papers you sent been yet delivered 


to him. I have made enquiry of M r Sam 1 Winslow into 
the circumstances of his late father's affairs, and he gave 
me a very candid account of them, so far as he appeared 
to be acquainted with them. He says, his father when 
he left Boston took with him all his bonds & other 
securities, which when he died at New York fell into the 
hands of M r Isaac Winslow, one of his executors, who, 
he presumes, is still possessed of them, except a few w ch 
the s d executor sent to him, and on which he has received 
some money in part of his own and his sister's share of 
the estate ; that the Com tee of Sequestration took posses- 
sion of the furniture and sold, it, but does not know how 
the money was applied; that several peices of land under 
mortgage to his father, the mortgages being on record, 
had been libelled in this county and would probablj T be 
declared forfeited, but having employed a couple of 
lawyers in the case, no judgment of court has yet been 
obtained against them. With regard to other securities 
(from persons in Massachus* 8 ) not recorded, he did not 
seem apprehensive of any other danger than might arise 
from the possible failure of the persons from whom they 
are due ; that he has not had any administration granted 
to him on his father's estate, nor had anything to do with 
it farther than what is above mentioned. With regard 
to his late mother's real estate, he says, it is not subject 
to forfeiture ; that the Penobscot lands nothing had been 
transacted about them, nor could be, as there is a British 
garrison in the neighbourhood of them. The lands at 
Falmouth & its vicinity he had lately administered upon, 
and should do his best for the concerned. He farther told 
me that while his father was in Boston during; the block- 
ade, he remitted a considerable sum of money on his own 
account to Gov r Hutchinson in London, w ch afterwards 
was put into the hands of M r Rich d Clarke. Out of this 
sum the widow has received her legacy of £1000 st g , and 
that there remains a large ballance due to the heirs. If he 

1782.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 477 

is not mistaken in this matter, you can probably come at 
that bal a in behalf of your son. This is the substance of 
the account he gave me. I desired him to write you on 
this subject by this opportunity, and he told me he would. 
He mentioned also that in Connecticut, in consequence 
of an Act of that State, debts due to his father to the 
amount of £1000 had been paid into their public treasury. 
You mention that a copy of M r Winslow's will & a list of 
debts were enclosed. I suppose they accompanied your 
original letter, w ch I have not yet rec d . 

I have lately rec d a letter from Sir W m Pepperell, with 
a copy of Col Royall's will. The latter is in circulation 
among some of the parties mentioned in it. When the 
executors, M r Wendell, M r Hall, & myself, (no other of 
them being in America) have had opportunity of consider- 
ing it jointly, I will do myself the pleasure of writing to Sir 
William ; in the mean time please to present my respect- 
ful comp ts to him. M r Hall has frequently told me he has 
from time to time given Col Royall an account of his 
affairs here, and I will desire him to send you an account 
of them, particularly with regard to y e Medford and Wal- 
pole estates. What sum he has advanced for Col° Royall 
1 do not know ; but I have heard him say, he relied on 
the Colonel's honour that it would be repaid to him. He 
would have drawn bills on him for it, had not exchange 
been at so low a rate. It is my belief that M r Hall has 
acted with great care and fidelity in .the Col°' s affairs, & 
has managed as prudently and as well as any other man 
could ; & therefore if it should turn out that the estate 
should be declared forfeited (in which case no part of it 
can be applied to reimburse M r Hall the expence of defend- 
ing it for the Colonel & his heirs), he will have a just 
demand on them for a reimbursement. No judgment of 
court in Massachusetts has yet been obtained against the 
s d estate, & I hope will not be ; but to prevent it, as there 
has been so there must be one lawyer at least engaged, & 


he will expect to be paid. This being a thing so essentially 
necessary for you in particular with regard to the libels 
depending against the Middlesex estate, that, was I circum- 
stanced as you are with respect to it, I should think my at- 
torney ought in justice to me to employ a lawyer in defence 
of my right, although from my distance & consequent 
unacquaintance with y e circumstances I had forbidden it. 
I have consulted your father, & he approves of it. Your 
honour therefore will be relied on for the payment of ne- 
cessary council & attendance on this business ; and as you 
desire me u to exert myself on your behalf for the preser- 
vation of this valuable interest," you may depend on my 
best endeavours for that purpose. I should think it ad- 
viseable for you to request your father to pay what shall 
be needful in this business, or allow of bills to be drawn 
on you therefor, if necessary, about which in your next 
letter you '11 please to be as clear and decisive as may be. 
I should with pleasure advance money for you on this 
occasion, but the many calls I have for it, & the difficulty 
of collecting it in these times, put it out of my power. 
You are not to place any dependance on such an expence 
being defrayed out of the said estate in case of forfeiture, 
to prevent w ch it is to be applied ; & in the meanwhile no 
part of the income can be applied in that way, nor in any 
other different from what the agent is by law directed to 
apply it. The estate is at present as much out of the 
power of your attornies here as any estate in Japan, & will 
remain so till the libels be dismised, or till the General 
Court by some act of theirs allow the will to operate, w ch 
I will do my endeavour to have effected. If judgment be 
recovered against the estate, I apprehend that no debts 
will be payable out of it, but such as are due from Col 
Royall, though we would endeavour that all yours should 
be paid out of it. 

We are extreamly sorry you are disappointed in your 
expectation of an heir to that estate, but hope you will 

1782.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 479 

soon have one, and sincerely rejoice with you in your clear 
partner's restoration from her late dangerous state. Your 
nephew, D r Shirley Erving, takes the charge of this letter. 
It gives me pleasure to tell you he has made considerable 
proficience in his profession, that he is a sensible, worthy 
young gentleman & an amiable character. The great 
number of that profession here makes it difficult to get 
into business of a sudden, w ch has occasioned him to visite 
his friends on your side the water for a few months. I 
wish he could meet with encouragement equal to his merit, 
& if it should be in your way to put him forward, I dare 
sa,y it would give you pleasure to do it. Your neice, Miss 
Sally Waldo, is going to be very agreably connected with 
M r Wetmore, of Salem, a sensible man & a good lawyer. 
I shall engage him in your business in the affair of the 
libel against the Medford estate. Having consulted your 
father upon it, he much approves of the measure. This 
was the more necessary as M r Lowell, whom M r Hall has 
employed in this affair, is at Congress, and it is uncertain 
when he will return. M rs Bowdoin and your other friends 
desire me to express their sincere affection & regard to 
you & M rs Erving, in which they are most affectionately 
joined by, dear Sir, 

Yours, &c. 

I intended writing Mess rs Lane, Son, & Fraser by this 
opportunity, but from interruptions am obliged to postpone 
it. I shall be much oblig d to them if they will fav r me 
with y e present state of my acc° w th them & M r Michael 
Scott. M r Sam 1 Waldo has dl d me a letter for you w ch I 
have given to D r Erving. July 22 d . 



To the Honorable the President of the Senate and to the 
Honorable the Speaker of the House of Representatives, 
Commonwealth of Massachusetts: 

Honorable Gentlemen, — A direct & willful falsliood 
having been advanced by a writer who signs James Sulli- 
van in a letter addressed to me, in the Continental Jour- 
nal of Thursday the 22 d ultimo, in which he says, Siat in 
the memorial I had the honor of presenting thro' you on 
the 29th of April last, to the two Houses of Assembly, I 
have therin solemnly aver eel that I procured & trans- 
mitted to this country the wel remembered treasonable & 
incendiary letters of the late Gov r Hutchinson, Oliver, & 
others, & that I had therein also demanded of my country 
a reward for that transaction ! and the said Sullivan 
having also commented upon the same, as tho' what he 
had so asserted were facts ! will your Honors be pleased 
to look into the said memorial now on the files of the 
General Court (a copy of which I did not reserve to my- 
self) and signify whither or not I have therein declared 
that I did procure & send the said letters to this country ? 
or that I have demanded any kind of reward or compen- 
sation for having sent them ? 

In the memorial I had the honor of presenting I believe 
your Honors will find it set forth that D r Franklin & myself 
were dismissed from all the employments we held under 

* This letter is printed from a rough draught, with numerous interlineations, in ink of 
two colors, in Temple's handwriting and signed by him. It has no indorsement, and may 
not have been sent in the precise form here given. 

The volume from which these selections have been made contains much additional mate- 
rial, both in print and in manuscript, relative to Temple's visits to America in 1778 and 
1781, and to the accusations brought against him in different quarters of having been either 
disloyal to his sovereign or false to the land of his birth. Among other evidences filed by 
him to vindicate his conduct is a voluminous document consisting of Attorney-General 
Sullivan's Report to the Legislature, profusely annotated by Temple, whose counsel was 
John Lowell, afterward Judge of the District Court of the United States. See also a letter 
from Rev. William Gordon to Arthur Lee, dated Oct. 2, 1782, printed in the Life of Arthur 
Lee, vol. ii. p. 288. —Eds. 

1782.] JOHN" TEMPLE. 481 

the Crown of England expressly for our attachment to the 
cause of our country, & particularly for having obtained 
& transmitted, as the Ministry were pleased to say, to 
the State of Massachusetts certain original letters & 
papers written by the late Gov r Hutchinson, Oliver, & 
others, which opinion of the Ministry is so notoriously 
known to have been the cause of our dismission that I 
imagine the most abandon'd to falshood will not attempt 
to deny it, but my memorial is totally & designedly silent 
by what means the letters were obtained in England, or 
at whose desire they were transmitted to this country. 

'Tis not yet many days since I publicly detected this 
same M r Sullivan in as willful & perhaps a more malicious 
falshood when he asserted that I & my friends were bitter 
enemies to D r Franklin, who is the uniting link between 
France & America ; and I then took occasion to say, that 
" by what means the letters he had concerned himself 
about were obtained in England, and at whose desire they 
were transmitted under certain positive injunctions for 
the perusal of seven gentlemen only of this common- 
wealth, was an important secret not yet lowered down to 
the level of M r Sullivan's rank & consideration." These 
words I again repeat, and I also reassert that " when the 
time comes for unfolding this secret which hath excited the 
curiosity of perhaps more than half Europe, the employ- 
ers of said Sullivan, their partizan, will appear in black. 
I assert this from personal knowledge, because D r Frank- 
lin acquainted me with every step he took in that 
memorable transaction. He shewed me every line he 
wrote & every line written to him upon the occasion, and 
commented upon the contents of one of the letters writ- 
ten to him, paliating the violation of his injunction, with 
more asperity than I ever before knew him to discover. 
His correspondents were the Rev d D r Cooper of Boston, & 
Tho s Cushing, Esq r , then Speaker of the House of R. One 
or two of their original letters upon the business I have 



among my papers in Europe, which by mere accident of 
inattention or forgetfullness was left in my hands by 
D r Franklin. I am very sensible, honorable gentlemen, 
that the request I have now made will be giving you 
some little trouble, but that manly desire of supporting 
truth, & of detecting falshood wheresoever it shall be 
found, which must be prevalent in your minds will power- 
fully & abundantly plead my excuse. I am, honorable 
gentlemen, with all deference & respect, 

Your most obedient and most humble servant. 
Boston, 1 Sept., 1782. J - TEMPLE. 


Dedham, Wednesday morning. [Sept., 1782.] 

Dear Sir, — I am sorry it so happened that your let- 
ter of Saturday last did not come to hand till late last 

The Massachusetts Congress, as it was called, when sit- 
ting at Watertown, in 1775, committed all the letters & 
other papers found in Gov r Hutchinson's house at Milton 
to my keeping, with a desire that I would publish from 
time to time such as I tho't might be of service to the 
public, either in newspapers or in pamphlets, with such re- 
marks & illustrations by way of marginal notes as should 
occur to me, if I thought proper. They were for a while 
in the hands of D r Gordon, but they were lodged with 

* Samuel Dexter, an eminent merchant of Boston, was a son of Rev. Samuel Dexter, of 
Dedham, where he was born March 10, 1720. At his death, which occurred at Mendon, 
June 10, 1810, he left a bequest to Harvard College on which was afterward founded the 
Dexter Lectureship on Biblical Criticism, now united with the Hancock Professorship of 
Hebrew. From 1708 to the breaking out of the Revolution he was a member of the Coun- 
cil of Massachusetts, which office he again filled for a short time after the subversion of the 
British authority. He was an active and sagacious leader on the popular side, and a man 
of marked ability. See Appleton's Cyclopaedia of American Biographv, vol. ii. p. 161; 
N. E. Hist, and (Jen. Reg., vol. viii. p. 249; Quincy's Hist, of Harvard University, vol. 
ii. pp. 296-298; and also a letter from' Mr. Dexter to James Bowdoin, dated Jan. 20. 1779, 
in Proceedings, vol. vi. pp. 359-301. — Eds. 

1782.] SAMUEL DEXTER. 483 

him only for a time, and by myself, and not by any pub- 
lic order. After government was resumed, the legislative 
body of Massachusetts, on a report of a committee of both 
Houses, of which M r John Adams was chairman, renewed 
the commitment of said letters & papers to me, to be 
carefully preserved, as containing valuable documents for 
future history. These things are matters of record, and 
the last transaction printed in the Journals of the House 
of Representatives. It is probable that those that con- 
stituted the Congress at Watertown, and the General 
Court afterwards, will on seeing the publication in Gill's 
paper recollect that the papers were committed to me, 
as a sacred depositum, and will consequently consider 
me as the writer, altho' my proper signature is wanting. 
Nor have I the least desire to be unknown, and am there- 
fore freely willing the printer should be instructed to in- 
form every one who may inquire that the paper came 
from me. I am equally willing, Sir, that you should as 
introductory to it in the paper, or at foot, mention its 
having been handed to you by me, either by mentioning 
my name, or my description as keeper of the letters & 
other papers. My only motive is to render you some ser- 
vice, if m my power, under the ungenerous and even cruel 
treatment you have met with, wbich has equally excited 
my grief and indignation. And my only objection to 
signing my name before I sent the paper to M r Bowdoin 
was on account of the pointed expressions contained in it 
against a certain quondam Judge who — tho' I detest for 
his malicious invectives against you and my old friend 
M r Adams some time ago, yet I greatly despise as a writer ', 
and would by no means be thought to court an attack 
from him. At the same time I am willing that he and 
every body else should know that I sent the paper to the 
press. I read all the papers except Saturday's Evening 
Post. That I seldom meet with, unless in Boston, and 
have not yet seen what you refer to, under the signatures 


of the two gentlemen you mention. After all, if M r 
Bowdoin still joins with yourself in opinion that my sig- 
nature will be of any service, which the knowledge of my 
being the writer without it would not, I shall not find the 
least fault if it should appear. But whether it should or 
not, I am desirous that these words in the introduction 
to the extracts, vizt., — and as it has a malicious ajjjjca?*- 
ance to insinuate to the contrary — should be changed for 
the following, vizt., — but as it has been maliciously insinu- 
ated to the contrary* As the bearer waits I cannot add 
save, that I am with much regard, d r S r , 
Y r most obedient serv*. 

Samuel Dexter. 

T fear I am too late with this l r . My best regards to 
M r B. 

Hon M b Temple. 


Boston, 27 th September, 17S2. 

Sir, — Having just now learnt that M r Sullivan has 
this day requested to be heard before the Hon ble House of 
Representatives in accusation of you as a man dangerous 
to the community, I cannot feel myself at ease in leaving 
town untill I have given you in writing the sentiments 
which I gave the Hon ble Com tee of both Houses when ex- 
amin'd before them in May last. 

* The "Continental Journal" of Sept. 26, 1782, contains the communication to which 
Mr. Dexter's letter refers. It is signed "Y.," and comprises several extracts relating to 
Mr. Temple from Gov. Hutchinson's Letter Book; and at the foot is a note as follows: 
"The ahovc extracts from Gov. Hutchinson's letter-book are from the honorable gentleman 
to whom the custody of said letter-book was committed by the General Court in 1775." 
" The quondam Judge" was James Sullivan. In the "Boston Evening Post" of Sept. 
21, 1782, are a letter from James Bowdoin to Samuel Adams and one from Charles Chauncy 
to John Temple — both relating to Mr. Temple — which are probably the letters Mr. 
Dexter had "not yet seen." — Ens. 

t Colonel John Trumbull, better known as an artist, was born in Lebanon, Conn., June G, 
1750, graduated at Harvard College in 1773, and died in the city of New York Xov. 10, 
1843. His autobiography contains numerous allusions to his friend Temple. See Appleton'a 
Cyclopa-dia of American Biography, vol. vi. pp. 1G8, 109. — Eds. 

1782.] JOHN TRUMBULL. 485 

I declar'd to them, what I now repeat, that your friends 
(while I had the honor of being acquainted with you in 
London) I knew to be the most avow'd & most respectable 
friends of America, — such as the Dukes of Richmond & 
Rutland, M r Burke, Doct r Price, M r D. Hartley, Counsel- 
lor Lee, &c, names which have been eminent in the pres- 
ent contest, uniform in their friendship for this country, & 
whose favorable sentiments have been much strengthened 
by the information they deriv'd from their intercourse 
with you. 

I was ask'd by the Hon ble Committee, in what light you 
appear d to be regarded by the ministerial party. I de- 
clar'd to them, — as a man odious & suspected ; as a friend 
to this country, and an effectual enemy to their measures : 
and I further mention'd, what I think it my duty to repeat, 
that both parties, so far as I knew their opinions, regarded 
you as a man acting under the confidential instructions of 
your country, & intended by them for their resident in the 
most honorable character on the conclusion of a peace. 

The mode in which your examination as a dangerous man 
has been hitherto conducted appears to me somewhat sin- 
gular. I congratulate you that it is at length brought to 
such a stage as affords a prospect of the fullest investiga- 
tion, for I am convinc'd that nothing else is wanting to 
give you that high place in the esteem of your country 
which your services & sufferings have merited. I have 
the honor to be, with sentiments of gratitude & esteem, Sir, 
Your real friend & servant. 

John Trumbull. 

P. S. You are at liberty to make such use of this letter 
as you please. I doubt n[ot] it will be equally regarded 
as my affi [davit] & am ready, if any man question its 
validity to make oath to it. 

Hon John Temple, Esquire. 



Boston, Nov* 12, 17S2. 
Sir, — I had y e honour of your letters of y e 1 st Feb ry & 
30 th April last, with a copy of our late friend, Col Royal's, 
will accompanying y e former & an authenticated copy y e 
latter. I observe by it he has appointed me one of his 
ex rs for his estate in this country, and you request my 
acceptance of that trust. It is immaterial under y e pres- 
ent circumstances of things who are y e ex rs , as the will in 
consequence of y e laws relative to absentees & their estates 
can have no operation. There has been a libel exhibited 
& for some time depending in y e inf r court for y e County 
of Middlesex against y e estate in that county, but 
M r Willis Hall, of Medford, (who has consulted me on 
matters concerning that estate & had a power of at- 
torney from Col Royall) with y e assistance of a lawyer, 
has procured y e trial to be postponed from time to 
time, and no trial has yet been had. M r Hall and I, 
who were both included in y° Colonel's last power, some 
time ago in a petition to y e G 1 Court gave a just acc° 
of his character, and prayed that liberty might be granted 
for his return & that y e s d libel might be dismissed. The 
pet n was rec d & ord d to lie for consideration, and re- 
peatedly operated as a reason for postponing y e trial, and 
since y e Colonel's death another petition has been prepared, 
and will be offered when necessary, in order to produce 
y e like effect. M r Hall has acted very judiciously in the 
Colonel's affairs, and as he is in advance on that account 

* Grandson of the first Sir William Pepperell. His original surname -was Sparhawk, 
but by li is grandfather's will he was required to procure an act of the Legislature authorizing 
him to drop the name of Sparhawk and assume that of Pepperell, which he did on coming 
of age. He was born in Battery, Nov. 21, 1740. and graduated at Harvard College in 
17(>0. In 1774 lie was made a Mandamus Councillor, and thereby incurred the hitter ani- 
mosity of his neighbors. In the following year he went to England, and in 1778 was 
proscribed and banished. He filled a prominent place among the Refugees, and continued 
in England until his death in 1816. His wife, a daughter of Col. Isaac Royall, died on the 
voyage to England in 1775. See Sabine's American Loyalists, vol. ii. pp. 168-176. — Eds. 

1782.] JAMES BOWDOIN. 487 

depends on his heirs for a reimbursement. I have at 
several times given M r G. Erving a particular acc° of those 
affairs, so far as I have had any knowledge of them ; and 
I beg leave to refer you to him for further information. In 
y e mean while I will continue to assist M r Hall in y e best 
manner in my power. M rs Borland, * who sent me from 
New London your last letter with y e copy of y e will w ch 
came to hand three days ago, intends, as I understand, to 
petition y e G- 1 C fc for liberty to return hither ; but from 
y e failure of a like petition from M r Brattle repeatedly 
urged, I fear it will be to no purpose. Most sincerely 
joining with you in ardent wishes for a peace and y e 
restoration of friends to friends, I am, with great 
respect, S r , 

* Anna Vassal], widow of John Borland, of Boston; afterward wife of William Knight, 
of Portsmouth, N. II. — Eds, 





Adams, Mrs. Abigail. Notice of, 383 n. 
Letter from, to James Bowdoin,- 383. 

Adams, Pres. John, 116 n., 176, 451 n., 
454, 464, 468, 483. His "Life and 
Letters " cited, 176 n. 

Adams, Samuel, 205. Letter from, to 
James Bowdoin, 423. Letters to, from 
James Bowdoin, 425, 428. Mentioned, 
434, 436. 

Allen, , 19. 

Almon, John, 154, 155, 251, 383. 

America, illicit trade in, 19, 20. New 
legislation for, proposed in the House 
of Commons, 53. Ministerial plans in 
regard to, 79, 81, 132, 136. State of 
the currency, 241. Commercial objec- 
tions to the American revenue acts, 

American Academy of Arts and Sciences, 
Dr. Franklin nominated as a member 
of, 449. 

American army, best policy to be pur- 
sued about enlistments for, 401. Sub- 
scription in Philadelphia as a mark of 
esteem for the soldiers of, 441. 

Amherst, Gen. Jeffrey, 4, 5, 178. 

Anguilla, irregularities in importations of 
molasses from, 26, 29 n., 30, 36, 50. 

Appleton's " Cyclopaedia of American 
Biography " cited, 100 n., 116 n., 138 n., 
385 n., 432 n., 471 n., 482 n.. 484 n. 

Apthorp, Charles, 183 n. 

Apthorp, George, 358. 

Apthorp, Miss Sarah W., 421 n. 

Arnold, Gen. Benedict, 452. 

Avery, John, Secretary of Mass., 468. 

Baker, , 100. 

Baldwin, , 363. 

Barbadoes, claim of the Assembly to 

appoint an agent to reside in England, 


Barre', Col. Isaac, his speech against the 
passage of the Stamp Act, 46. Pro- 
poses a revision of all acts relating to 
America, 136. 

Barrington, William Shute, Viscount, 178. 
Proposes a new clause in the American 
mutiny bill, 131. 

Baudoin, Pierre, xiii. 

Beardsley, Rev. E. Edwards, D.D., his 
" Life and Times of W. S. Johnson " 
cited, 280. 

Beckford, William, Lord Mayor of Lon- 
don, 122, 131, 136, 137, 154, 164, 177, 
180, 181, 203. 

Berkeley, Mrs. George, 282, 291. 

Berkeley, Rev. Dr. George, 281. 

Berkenhaupt, Dr. , committed to 

prison on suspicion of being an emis- 
sary from Great Britain, 421. 

Berkenhaupt, Mrs. Helena, a friend of 
Mrs. John Temple, 424 n. 

Bernard, Sir Francis, Gov. of Mass. 
Message to the Council and House of 
Representatives, $5. Extract from a 
letter of Lord Hillsborough to, ib. Let- 
ter from the Council to, 99. Letter 
from Gen. Gage to, 100. His connection 
with frauds on the revenue, 26 n., 27- 
29, 40, 288. His dispute with John 
Temple about the riot at Taunton, 62, 
68. His relations with Temple, 76. 
Recommends that the troops ordered 
to Boston should be quartered in the 
Manufactory House, 104. Is about to 
sail for England, 150. Proposal to 
make him Governor of a new Prov- 
ince, 269. A Commissioner in Ireland, 
292. Mentioned, 6n., 10, 11, 31, 44, 
52, 58, 63, 70, 73, 109-112, 114, 118, 123, 
130, 142, 143, 145, 147, 158-160, 172, 
180, 184, 185. 191, 216, 228, 230, 233, 
240, 257, 274, 278, 281, 282, 302, 305, 
311, 346, 424. 

Bollan, William. Notice of, 5 n. Let- 
ters from, to Andrew Oliver, 5, 8; 
Samuel Danforth, 121, 131, 133, 135, 
137, 154, 164, 165, 172, 176, 180, 181, 



187, 203, 246, 249, 266, 269, 274 ; Sam- 
uel Dant'orth and others, 144, 146; 
James Bowdoin and others, lfc>2 ; the 
Committee of the Council of Massa- 
chusetts, 808, 385,840, 358, 860, 867; 
James Bowdoin, 319, 889, 341, 379; 
Earl Gower, 842. Petitions from, to 
the House of Commons, 125, 101, 364; 
to the King, 269. Letters to, from 
Samuel Danforth, 113; John Erving, 
149, 158; James Bowdoin, 107, 305, 
371, 381 ; the Council of Massachu- 
setts, 224; Committee of the Council 
of Massachusetts, 331, 365. Trans- 
mits copies of Gov. Bernard's letters, 
143, 145. Appointed by the Council 
their Agent in behalf of the Province, 
149. Memorandum by, with regard to 
Gen. Gage's commission, 178. Urges 
the appointment of a legal attorney, 
192. On his services to the Province, 
256-258, 208. Complains of the want 
of admissible authority to act for the 
Province, 275. Refusal of the Gover- 
nor to consent to the payment of his 
salary, 300. Publishes " The Rights 
of the English Colonies," 381. Men- 
tioned, 9n., 58, 160, 214, 219, 224, 232, 
238, 238, 248, 261, 276, 296. 
Borland, Mrs. John (Anna Vassall), 487. 
Boscawen, Admiral Edward, 209. 
Boston. Letters to the Committee of the 
Town of, from Barlow Trecothick, 183 ; 
Thomas Pownall, 189. Rejoicings at, 
on the capture of Quebec, 4. Appli- 
cation in England for relief of suf- 
ferers by fire, 8. Disturbances in, 72. 
Troops to be sent to, and quartered in, 
101-111. Riots in, 108, 141. Charges 
against the selectmen and town of, 
140, 148, 153. Troops posted in the 
town, 159. Soldiers fire on the towns- 
people, 107-109, 176, 182. State of the 
town, 191. Fleet to rendezvous at, 192. 
Boston Port Bill introduced in the 
House of Commons, 364?/. William 
Bollan's petition against it, 364. Par- 
ticulars of siege of, 392-397. 
" Boston Evening-Post " cited, 4 n., 62 n., 

108 n., 170/1., 195 n., 484 n. 
"Boston Gazette" cited, 99 n., 141 n., 
151 n., 101 n. Alleged libel on Gov. 
Hutchinson in, 228. 
Botetourt, Narbonne Berkeley, Baron de, 

Governor of Virginia, 185, 180. 
Bowdoin, Mrs. James (Elizabeth Erving). 
Letter to, from Mrs. Esther Reed, 441. 
Mentioned, xiii., 85, 121, 130, 150, 161, 
172, 210, 244, 274, 277, 284, 286, 293, 
294, 302, 374, 388, 391, 405, 406 »., 408, 
428, 449, 455. 
Bowdoin, James. Account of, xiii. Let- 
tors from, to James Erving, 4 ; Jasper 
Mauduit, 10,17: Benjamin Franklin, 
21, 248, 276, 400, 449; John Lane, 84 ; 
Thomas Gage, 119, 129; John Win- 

throp, 120; Thomas Pownall, 138, 157, 
212, 219, 233, 238, 245, 295, 297 ; Wil- 
liam Bollan, 167, 305, 371, 381 ; Samuel 
Hood, 194, 294 ; Alexander Mackay, 
289 ; John Temple, 292, 300, 327, 373 ; 
Josiah Quincy, 3b9, 392; Mercy War- 
ren, 397; the Council and House of 
Representatives of Massachusetts, 402; 
Arthur St. Clair, 405 ; George Wash- 
ington, 415, 427, 439; Samuel Adams, 
425, 428 ; the Senate and House of 
Representatives of Massachusetts, 
444; Arthur Lee, 450; George Erving, 
472, 475 ; Sir William Pepperell , 486. 
Letters to, from Jasper Mauduit, 9, 12, 
14; John Winthrop, 116, 127; Thomas 
Gage, 120; Samuel Hood, 155, 160, 
175, 210, 211, 273 ; Alexander Mackay, 
170; Thomas Pownall, 173, 195, 196, 
205, 208, 270; William Bollan, 182, 
319, 339, 341, 379; Thomas Hollis, 
193; Benjamin Franklin, 261; John 
Temple, 282 ; James Gambier, 285, 431 ; 
Abigail Adams, 383; Thomas Cush- 
ing, 384 ; Josiah Quincy, 387, 391, 
394; Robert Pierpont, 393; Joseph 
Ward, 403, 409; Arthur St. Clair, 
407 ; Samuel Adams, 423 ; George 
Washington, 436, 437 ; Count Rocham- 
beau, 442; Arthur Lee, 448; L. De 
Neufville, 451 ; James Warren, 454 ; 
Jonathan Trumbull, 471. Certificate 
of, in regard to John Temple's con- 
nection with the Hutchinson-Whately 
Letters, 434. Reports draught of an 
address to the Governor, 99. Reports 
an answer to the Governor's proposal 
about quartering troops, 104. Nega- 
tived as a Councillor, 159. Describes 
the incidents of March 5, 1770, 167-169. 
On the differences between the Col- 
onies and the mother country, 239-244. 
On the salaries of the Governor and 
Judges, 298-800. Prevented from at- 
tending the Continental Congress by 
the illness of Mrs. Bowdoin, 374. Re- 
signs his seat in the Council, 403. 
Declines the offices of Lieutenant 
Governor and a Senator of Massachu- 
setts, 444. Mentioned, 81 «., 99, 100, 
102-104, 147, 206, 219, 823, 331 n., 334, 
343, 359, 364 n., 365 n., 367, 373 n.. 370, 
391 »., 404 »., 405 ».. 414;?., 424 »., 
428 »., 434 »., 439 n., 456, 458, 460, 463, 
482 »., 483, 484 ». 

Bowdoin, James, Jr. Account of, xiv. 
Letters to, from John Temple, 357 ; 
Perez Morton, 421, 422. Entered at 
Christ Church College, Oxford, 273. 
Mentioned, 248, 277, 285, 293, 302, 

Bowdoin, John, xiii. 

Bowdoin, Sarah, xiv. 

Bowdoin, Hon. William, xiv. 

Bowdoin College, xiv. 

Bowers, Col. , 390. 



Bowers, Harry, 390. 

Boy dell's Engravings, James Bowdoin 
declines to subscribe for them on ac- 
count of the political troubles, 84. 

Bradbury, John, one of the Council of 
Mass., 219. 

Bradford, Aiden, LL.D., his " State Pa- 
pers " cited, 229 n. 

Brattle, Thomas, failure of his petition 
to return to Massachusetts, 487. 

Brattle, William, one of the Council of 
Mass., 219, 220, 334. 

Bridgeman, , 191. 

Bridgen, , 135. 

Brown, Enoch, 392. 

Brown, William, 44 n. Appointed Col- 
lector of Customs at Salem, 29 n. 

Buckingham, George Nugent-Temple- 
Grenville, Marquis of, xvii. 

Burgoyne, Gen. Sir John, 386, 404, 408, 
414, 428, 471. 

Burke, Sir Bernard, his "Peerage and 
Baronetage" cited, 416 n. 

Burke, Rt. Hon. Edmund, private secre- 
tary to the Marquis of Rockingham, 
42 n., 72. One of John Temple's 
friends, 485. 

Bute, John Stuart, Earl of, 287. 

Butt's Hill, fortified by' the American 
troops, 422. 


Calais, had the right to representation 
in Parliament, 363. 

Califf, , 310, 311. 

Camden, Charles Pratt, Earl, 362, 363, 
367-369, 371, 380, 433. 

Cane, Major , 388. 

Carleton, Gen. Guy, 387. 

Carlisle, Frederick Howard, Earl of, one 
of the commissioners to treat for 
peace with the Colonies, 446, 465, 466. 

Castle William, Boston, troops to be 
quartered at, 101, 103, 105-107, 109- 
111. Question as to the command of, 
190, 217, 225. Proposed removal of 
the Custom House to, 192. Removal 
of the Provincial troops from, 214. 

Cavendish, Lord John, 379. 

Chadwick, , willing to go on an ex- 
pedition to observe the transit of 
Venus, 117. Mentioned, 128. 

Charleston, S. C, siege of, 437, 438. 

Chatham, William Pitt, Earl of 63, 79, 
187, 247, 281-283, 294, 301, 376, 379, 
428. Unpopularity of, 76. " Corre- 
spondence of," cited, 18 n. 

Chauncv, Rev. Charles, D.D. Notice 
of, 375 n. Letter from, to John Temple, 
375. Mentioned, 301, 434, 436, 484 n. 

Church, Dr. Benjamin, taken into cus- 
tody, 388. High opinion of his prin- 
ciples, 389. 

Church, Edward, 388. 

Clarke, Col. , 20, 23, 30. 

Clarke, Richard, 476. 

Clarke and Sons, Richard, and others. 
Petition to the Governor and Council 
of Massachusetts, relative to the ship- 
ments of tea, 321. Proceedings of the 
Council on their petition, 323. 

Clifford, , 390. 

Clinton, Gen. Sir William, 442. 

Cobb, Dr. David, 128. 

Cobble Hill, 393, 394. 

Cockle, James, suspension of, as Collec- 
tor at Salem, 26 n, 27-31. Dismissed 
from office, 36, 57. His misbehavior, 
39, 40, 41, 43, 44. 

Colebrook, Sir George, 281. 

Commissioners of the Customs at Bos- 
ton, 81, 278. Retire to Castle William, 
194, 327. 

" Continental Journal," letter by James 
Sullivan in, 480; letter by Samuel 
Dexter signed " Y," in, 484 n. 

Conway, Gen. Henry S., 63, 65, 355,360. 

Cooper, , 278. 

Cooper, Rev. Samuel, D.D., 218, 286, 
383, 400, 414, 434, 436, 481. 

Cornwallis, Charles, Marquis of 442 n., 
452, 471. 

Cotton, John, Deputy Secretary of Mas- 
sachusetts, 220, 232. 

Cottrell, , 336. 

Currency, paper, in use in all the Col- 
onies except Massachusetts, 241. De- 
preciation of the Continental bills, 
442 n. 

Curry, Capt. , 432. 

Cushing, Thomas. Notice of, 384 n. 
Letter from, to James Bowdoin, in- 
troducing George Washington, 384. 
Mentioned, 205, 239, 434, 436, 462, 481. 

Dairy mple, Lt.-Col. William, 101, 108- 
111, 215. Removes the British troops 
to Castle Island, 169. 

Dana, Francis. Notice of, 381 n. Ap- 
pointed charge des affaires at St.Peters- 
burg, 448. Mentioned, 474. 

Danforth, Rev. John, 113 n. 

Danforth, Samuel. Notice of, 113 n. 
Letter from, to William Bollan, 113. 
Letters to, from William Bollan, 121, 
131, 133, 135, 137, 144, 146, 154, 165, 
172, 176, 180, 181, 187, 203, 246, 249, 
266, 269, 274. Mentioned, 117 n., 323. 

Danforth, Thomas. Notice of, 117 n. 
Ready to go on an expedition to 
observe the transit of Venus, 117. 
Mentioned, 127-130. 

Darlington, Henry Vane, Earl of 306. 

Dartmouth, William Legge, Earl of 
Notice of, 376 n. Letters to, from the 
Council and House of Representatives 
of Massachusetts, 302; John Temple, 
376. Satisfaction in the Colonies at 



his appointment as Secretary of State, 
304. Mentioned, 302, 305-315, 318, 
329, 331, 335, o->l, 340, 341, 365. 
Davis, Edward, 472. 
Dearborn, Gen. Henry, xiv. 
De Berdt, Dennis, continued by the 
House of Representatives as their 
agent, 150. Mentioned, 160, 165, 269, 
441 n. 
De Grey, Thomas (Lord Walsingham), 
419 n. 

Denmark, Caroline Matilda, Queen of, 

D'Estaing, Charles H. T., Comte, 421, 
423, 427. 

Dexter, Samuel. Notice of, 482 n. Let- 
ter from, to John Temple, 482. Cus- 
todian of Gov. Hutchinson's letters 
and papers, ib. Mentioned, 219, 323, 
343, 367. 

Dickinson, John, 384. 

" Dictionary of National Biography " 
cited, 14 7i., 100 »., 138 n., 155 n., 193 n., 
209 7i., 285 n., 376 n., 418 »., 420 n. 

Donop, Col. Carl Emil Kurt v